Tuesday, December 15, 1987 - 1:30 p.m.
Speaker: I will now call the House to order. At this time we will proceed with Prayers.
Speaker: We will proceed at this time with the Order Paper.
Are there any Returns or Documents for tabling?
TABLING RETURNS AND DOCUMENTS
Hon. Mr. Penikett: I have for tabling the Business Development Advisory Board Annual Report, 1986-87.
Speaker: Are there any Reports of Committees? Are there any Petitions?
Mr. Lang: I have for tabling a petition submitted by a group of very concerned residents in Porter Creek East. The petition has 92 signatures and I should point out that the individuals did go about the community to ask them to support their concern about the housing projects that are being put in on Bamboo Crescent. There were only two individuals who said they would not sign the petition. From the outset it would seem to be an overwhelming concern being expressed by the area of Whitehorse. I would like to say to the House that the question the people of the area have is how many public housing units should be permitted on a street. The street in question presently has four units within a block and a half and now the government is proposing to put another four social housing units on the same street. I think there is cause for concern by the residents. I think it is legitimate. I think the people we are dealing with are good hard working citizens who contribute on a daily basis to the well being of Yukon, and their concern should be listened to by the Minister of Housing. He should mind this petition and have those lots go back out for disposal to the private sector rather than the government becoming the end all and be all to the people of the territory.
Speaker: Introduction of Bill?
Are there any Notices of Motion for the Production of Papers?
Are there any Notices of Motion?
Are there any Statements by Ministers?
Hon. Mrs. Joe: I rise to inform Members that the food advisory system, which has been in place in the Yukon for some time has worked in a comprehensive and timely fashion in the case of the recent shellfish alert. Environmental health officers were apprised of a potential problem as early as December 1, 1987 and have been in continuing contact with officials in Health Protection Branch in Ottawa. As soon as the alert was issued from Ottawa, all Yukon suppliers were contacted directly by the environmental health office.
We have had no cases of poisonings related to tainted shellfish reported to date within the territory, and none are expected.
With respect to products being sent to Yukoners by relatives who live outside, I wish to inform Members that imported and domestic frozen, canned or otherwise prepared products are not part of the alert. Processed seafood is not included as it is routinely inspected by Fisheries and Oceans. The alert relates only to live or fresh clams, oysters, mussels and quahaugs, none of which should be regarded as safe for consumption unless shipped through a supplier by air express. The present Air Canada strike almost precludes such shipping, as Air Canada is the major maritime carrier. Further, all potential suppliers have been alerted to the ban on sales and all product is in the process of recall. Finally, public information on this matter is being coordinated through the federal government, and, as Members will know, has received extensive media coverage.
I believe the shellfish contamination issue has been dealt with very thoroughly, and do not see that any further steps are necessary at this time. National Health and Welfare and Fisheries and Oceans will be continuing to inform the public through statements and press releases. No action from my department is, therefore, indicated unless new information comes to light.
Mrs. Firth: The ministerial statement that has been brought forward today is only here in response to a question that was raised by a Member of the Opposition. Let us get that fact straight.
It is interesting that the officials were looking after this problem December 1 and December 14. The Minister still did not know anything about it and had not been touch with anybody, and had received something from the mail but she had not read it yet. Obviously, the Minister had done nothing about this issue. She had not looked after Yukoners when it came to this issue. She was totally unprepared Monday morning to answer any questions about the issue and I have to ask myself just how caring this Minister is when she is not doing her job. It is just absolutely irresponsible.
Mr. McLachlan: I am convinced, at least for the time being, that the government has done all that it can at this point. I would only hope that they continue to monitor the situation. The only problem that I have with the Ministerial Statement is that it is a day late. That is becoming so characteristic of this government. Whenever they are pushed to the wall we get a me too reaction.
After Pacific Western Airlines leaves the territory, after Canadian Pacific Airlines merges with Pacific Western Airlines and reduces the competition further, then we get a reaction by the government, instead of a proactive stance. And I am afraid that it is happening more and more and I am also very concerned that we are on the brink of another situation in the same vein, with the proposed sale of NorthwesTel. Thank you.
Hon. Mrs. Joe: In regard to that hogwash from the other side, regarding the comments from the Member for Riverdale South: we do have a medical health officer here who is responsible to the this government and I have faith that those people are doing their job. They do it on behalf of our department; as well, they do it for all Yukoners. The job was being done. Thank you.
Speaker: This then brings us to the Question Period. Are there any questions?
Question re: Free trade
Mr. Phelps: With respect to the issue of free trade and, in particular, the press release yesterday where the Government Leader outlined free trade concerns. It states, Yukons ability to purchase and hire locally are the major concerns about how the free trade agreement will affect the Yukon economy, Government Leader Tony Penikett reaffirmed today.
Who did the analysis of the free trade document?
Hon. Mr. Penikett: As I indicated yesterday, the statement issued yesterday was not in response to the free trade document. It was based on the information that we had prior to the receipt in our office yesterday of the actual text. The analysis of the text is now going on.
Mr. Phelps: I must assume that the Government Leader okayed this press release. Was he aware yesterday that the local media - CBC Yukon News - carried a story, wherein the view of John Merritt, executive director of the Canadian Arctic Resources Committee, was that the free trade deal allows for local preference and local hire policies. Was the Government Leader aware of this, and did his department try to contact CARC before they issued this press release?
Hon. Mr. Penikett: I take some delight in hearing the Members from that party quote CARC as an authority, since that is not their accustomed position. No, we did not consult with Mr. Merritt about our position. I was aware of the news story and the comments attributed to Mr. Merritt. I do not know whether his information or point of view is based on his experience in Mr. McKnights office, or whether it is based on any particular expertise in the area. Our assessment, based on the information contained in Elements of Agreement, which is published by Ottawa - the only information we had before yesterday morning - was that local hire and local procurement are at risk.
Mr. Phelps: Is the Government Leader aware now that that position is wrong?
Hon. Mr. Penikett: We do not concede it is wrong at all. We do not concede that Mr. Merritt is correct or that his arguments hold water.
Question re: Free trade
Mr. Phelps: We have received the same official free trades package that the governments receive. We have gone through it. We have phoned the experts in Ottawa. We talked to Clark. One of those documents, Summary Elaborations and Clarifications of the Elements of the Agreement, at page 15, article 1603, reads as follows: Performance requirements - 1603 prescribes the imposition of significantly faded distorted performance requirements; it does not limit Canadas ability to negotiate local employment, product mandate, technology transfer or research and development undertakings with investors. It is very clear to everybody we have spoken to, and to us, that the statement contained in the lead paragraph of the press release that was put out and which the public was made to think was the result of an analysis of the actual document, is entirely incorrect. Will the Government Leader review this and issue an apology to the people of Yukon for providing misleading information?
Hon. Mr. Penikett: No, I will not issue an apology for issuing misleading information. No, I have not issued any misleading information. The experts on that area are on the other side of the House. I know it is highly improper in Question Period to be quoting from documents and trying to do a courtroom style cross examination, but since the Member opposite is quoting from documents I am sure you, Mr. Speaker, will permit me to do the same. In documents released by Mr. Baker and Mr. Yeutter, it makes it quite clear that national treatment will be applied to sellers, suppliers, the use of performance requirements of investors will be prohibited, that the parties agree to provide each other with national treatment, but the bottom of this is that they do not provide that the parties will impose export local content, local sourcing or import substitution requirements on each others investors.
Some Member: (Inaudible)
Hon. Mr. Penikett: I am sorry if the Member thinks it is ridiculous. I will keep my thoughts on the Opposition on that score to myself.
The point is there is going to be not only a dispute on the facts, but a dispute on the interpretation on this question for sometime to come I expect. We have entered the debate in a very limited way based on what information we were provided so far. We are analyzing the documents now that we were provided with yesterday, and we will have a more substantial response and hopefully more complete analysis when that review is complete.
Mr. Phelps: What is at issue here is that the Government Leader is clearly wrong, and the press release is clearly wrong. I wonder why, even here in the House, in order to support this fallacious piece of garbage that went out yesterday, he is referring not to the official piece of documentation, but to the press release put out weeks and weeks ago.
Hon. Mr. Penikett: If the Member wants to talk about fallacious documents I could refer to fallacious press releases put out by himself earlier this week accusing us of not having made any representations about our concerns throughout the process, which we did time and time again in meetings that were secret, as required by the federal government, which we were not allowed to report back from or report on. So, the Member opposite will not, with a straight face, talk to me about fallacious documents.
The analysis of this extremely complex trading arrangement, one which is historic, one which is profound, one which may change this country, and certainly one which will have a profound impact on our community, will take more than 24 hours, and I will have no apology to make for having our officials do the job properly and with care.
Mr. Phelps: If that is the Government Leaders position, surely he should have made that clear before he issued this piece of garbage. With regard to his other comment, why, if his officials were making representations to the negotiators on a timely basis before an agreement was struck, did he refuse to table anything in the House and why did he not indicate that in the questions and answers during the course of this sitting?
Hon. Mr. Penikett: The Member is old enough and experienced enough to know that we do not as a matter of course table ministerial communications, nor do we table documents that are under a secrecy embargo imposed by the federal government. We were involved in confidential briefings - basically the federal government briefing us - at I think at least ten meetings in the last couple of years at which officials were present, and my position, if the Member wants to know, is on record at the First Ministers Conference, at the Premiers Conference, going back from the time these negotiations were first announced. I identified my concerns and the concerns of this territory and I am quite prepared to table those documents because I made the point, rising out of the Macdonald Commission, of a concern about regional sensitivity, and urging that the negotiations be regionally sensitive, and they were not. No official of the federal government ever, at any stage of the negotiations, other than the officials meetings that we went to, ever sought our views on any particular in this arrangement.
Question re: Yukon College gymnasium
Mr. McLachlan: I want to address a question to the other Minister responsible for sorting out the construction problems, the Minister of Government Services. Why were the detailed design plans for the gymnasium at the Yukon College drawn up to the final specs, but then never tendered out?
Hon. Mr. Kimmerly: Again, if it is the Members intention to seek detailed information of this kind, he would get that readily if he gave notice of the questions like that.
I will take the question as notice.
Question re: Ross River housing
Mr. Lang: I have a general observation that maybe we should just cancel Question Period, because nobody seems to have any answers.
I would like to refer a question to the Minister of Housing and the Minister of Housing cannot say that he has not been given notice over the course of the last week or so because it has been an issue that has been raised. I want to refer to the $230,000 that is being spent in Ross River for the purposes of erecting two prefab homes from Prince George.
I would like to ask this question: it has come to our attention that the government is presently selling a home in the community. I asked the Minister yesterday: did the Housing Corporation consider, in their deliberations, to perhaps utilize that home for the purposes of social or staff housing, as opposed to going out and spending $230,000 for housing units prefabricated in Prince George?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The answer is, yes the government or the Yukon Housing Corporation and the Ross River Housing Association gave serious consideration to the possible use of what is commonly referred to as the Kings buy-back unit in Ross River. They determined, after an analysis of the costs to make the suitable for longterm, trouble-free service, that it would cost approximately $40,000 to bring the house to usable condition, given that the pipes are burst and there was considerable water damage, and decided that it was more prudent to sell the unit and make use of the two lots on which the unit was placed for other housing.
Mr. Lang: The information that I have is that there is another housing unit there that could conceivably have been used and I would like to ask the Minister this: in the house that was in the buy-back scheme, is it true that the government spent $30,000 in the past year to retrofit it?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I do not believe that is correct
Mr. Lang: Belief and fact are two different things. Would the Minister check with his department and report back?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I always check to make sure that what I give for Members information is, in fact, true.
Question re: Social housing policy
Mr. Nordling: I also have a question to the Minister in charge of housing. On December 10, 1986 there was a big announcement with respect to the new Yukon Housing Corporation and one of the things announced was that a policy paper on social housing would be delivered shortly to Cabinet and released at its discretion. Has this policy paper been done, and why has it not been released?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: On the recommendation of the board of the Yukon Housing Corporation, it was decided that the social housing paper ought to be reviewed through thorough public consultation, which the board is undertaking now.
Mr. Nordling: We were talking about a housing policy. We have books and books on housing studies, the future mandate of the Housing Corporation from October 31, 1986, decentralization of housing, and now we have a Yukon workshop on housing. When are we going to have a policy?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The Member referred to a potpourri of studies that have been undertaken, some of which have absolutely nothing to do with social housing policy development, so I am not sure how to take his remarks. With respect to the conference celebrating the United Nations efforts to resolve problems of the homeless in the world, that was a conference held recently to discuss a number of things, including what the housing corporations and communities were prepared to do with respect to housing people who could not afford to own their own homes.
Mr. Nordling: Yukoners would like to know what is going on with this Department and with housing, and in particular, social housing. Will the Minister make a commitment to this House and to Yukoners to bring back a policy with respect to social housing, and a certain date when it will be available?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: There are already, of course, existing policies with respect to social housing. In terms of bringing back the improved version of a social housing policy, the government will undertake through public consultations a more community-based approach to the development of the social housing policy and I would hope that a concrete policy proposal will be before the government by March.
Question re: Social housing policy
Mr. Lang: How can the Minister stand there and tell us that the government has not adopted a social housing policy on behalf of the Government of the Yukon Territory and the Yukon Housing Corporation and at the same time table in this House a document that indicates that within five years they are going to spend $60 million on housing? How can the Minister, in good conscience, ask the people of the territory to vote for $60 million and at the same time say they do not have a policy in place?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: There is already a policy on social housing. I was referring to the improved policy on social housing, which made it more community based.
Mr. Lang: Could the Minister surprise the people of the territory and everybody in this House and table the social policy?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: When the Member was responsible for the Yukon Housing Corporation, there was a policy. If he does not remember it, I can certainly have it tabled.
Mr. Lang: The Minister responsible for housing has told the people of the territory that the government is going to spend $60 million of Yukon taxpayers money on social housing throughout the territory. Meanwhile, we have evidence that there are empty houses strewn throughout the territory. I would like the Minister to table their social housing policy that justifies this multi-million dollar expenditure.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: Shouting is not going to change my answer. There is no approved $60 million or $70 million or any other capital program. The approvals are shown in the estimates for expenditures for this year and for those of last year. Those are the capital programs that the government has undertaken to date. That is the commitment that the government has made through its spending proposals.
The spending proposals are not exclusive to social housing. The government has undertaken a program that is based on existing housing policies that are in place, which I can elucidate in a few short sentences.
Question re: Social housing program
Mr. Lang: I recommend that the Minister either elucidate or hallucinate, one or the other. How can the Minister say that the government is not going to be spending approximately $60 million when page 85 of the Estimates, which we are considering, say $59,624,000? Did someone put it in the book and the Minister not read it?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The Yukon Housing Corporation put forward what it thought was a reasonable Capital Program for a period of five years. That program has been placed in the budget book. It is not an approved expenditure. The approved expenditure is shown in the amount to be voted. That is the governments commitment.
Mr. Lang: Could the Minister explain if he approved page 85 to be put into the budget book, which the people of the territory have for deliberation of the Capital expenditures of this government. If he did not approve it, who did?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The format for the new budget book is to provide as much information as possible. In this case, it was relevant to provide what the Yukon Housing Corporation thought was a reasonable Capital Program over the period of the next five years. That is what is outlined on the page that the Member refers to. It is not the governments commitment to social housing or to housing generally. Our commitment to housing is shown on another page with respect to the expenditures to be voted.
Mr. Lang: I want to clarify this because it is kind of baffling. Did the Cabinet review this document in totality, prior to it being tabled in this House?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The book was approved by Management Board, and the information that was provided to Members, for Members information, included a Capital Budget proposal by the Yukon Housing Corporation board.
Question re: Yukon Archives
Mr. McLachlan: Could the Minister of Government Services tell me if the new Yukon Archives has suffered an identical fate as the gymnasium construction project?
Hon. Mr. Kimmerly: That is a supplementary question to the question I previously took as notice. The problem I have is in the wording of the question being identical. I will check particularly if they are identical or not.
Mr. McLachlan: I said once before it was not the questions we were having problems with; it was the answers.
Cancellation of a major project like the gymnasium at the Yukon College is not one that the Minister needs advance notice on. It is a reasonable enough question to ask the Minister to answer. Every time we are getting a question from this side the Ministers do not know, they say we should have advised them or tipped them off.
Speaker: Order, please. Our Guideline 7 states a one sentence preamble is allowed in each supplementary question.
Mr. McLachlan: Does the government plan to go ahead under a revised schedule with the construction of the gymnasium and the Archives? If so, when?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I am sure the Member is upset because he only brought one question to the House and cannot get full play from only the one question, and no supplementaries.
With respect to the issue at hand, we discussed the plan for the College already in the Estimates debate in the Legislature. It was already reported to the House. It was a matter of public record, in terms of the newspapers, that there was a redesign of the community wing of the college in order to accommodate the construction of an arts centre and also to accommodate the future construction of the Archives and the gymnasium. The spending plans, as outlined in the Capital Budget, also refer to the construction schedule for the gymnasium and the archives. I refer the Member to the Budget book, which was tabled in the House some time ago.
Mr. McLachlan: I am sorry if the Minister of Community and Transportation Services is a little bruised by the question.
The Government Services Minister clearly did not understand what was happening with the swimming pool in Beaver Creek either, and had to take 24 hours to bring the answers back. Is it the intention of the Department of Government Services to use PCL as a construction manager for the continuation and finalization of those plans, or is the government going to go in a different direction for tendering the contract?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I am not bruised, I am confused, because all this information that the Member is asking about is a matter of public record. It is on the record and has been debated in this Legislature in this session. It is not even history. It is recent history, it is recent memory. We spoke about the PCL fees associated with the extension of the construction period for this facility. We spoke about the extension of the fees so that PCL can continue the construction management of the Archives and the gymnasium. We have already indicated that both of those projects are going ahead, we have indicated that they are going ahead next year. All the information is a matter of public record. I am not bruised by that, I am somewhat confused by the character of the question.
Question re: Ross River arena
Mrs. Firth: I have a question for the Minister of Community and Transportation Services regarding the Ross River arena. We have an arena in Ross River that has cost us $1.5 million. The arena has no heat, no plumbing, no washrooms, no electricity, no ice, and now we find out that the design of the walls did not conform to the building code and we could be looking at installing a sprinkler system. I would like the Minister to tell the House what the total projected capital cost to complete this arena is going to be.
Hon. Mr. Kimmerly: Again, exactly as yesterday, the Member opposite has irresponsibly misinformed us about facts that could easily be checked. I will inform the Member of the proper facts, starting with the questions asked yesterday.
There is no experimental piling project on this building. The pilings are perfectly normal and conform with the accepted practice. The Members misinformation probably comes from the National Research Council and this governments experiment on the fire hall at Ross River. It is incorrect to say that there is no electrical facilities in the building, it is incorrect to say that there is no ice, and it is incorrect to say that the walls do not conform with building standards. Those are irresponsibly wrong statements.
Mrs. Firth: This Minister constantly does this. I checked my sources before I came in here. I do not know who the Minister had write up his recitation that he was not able to give in this House yesterday.
I phoned Ross River today.
Speaker: Order, please. I would like to remind the Member of Guideline 7: a one sentence preamble is allowed in each supplementary question.
Mrs. Firth: I will take a new question.
Question re: Ross River arena
Mrs. Firth: I phoned Ross River. I phoned the people in the community. This information comes from the people in the community of Ross River. I do not know who wrote the little story up for the irresponsible Minister, who has shown that he cannot answer questions in this House; he does not have his information; he does not have his facts; and he does not have his homework done. His performance has been less than admirable.
In light of this information, how much is this project going to cost in total to get the arena completed so that it can be used by the people of Ross River?
Hon. Mr. Kimmerly: The arena can be used now. It is being flooded, and the ice will be used in a day or so. The flooding started as of December 11. The cost of the completed project to use the building as it now is, is $1,516,000.
Mrs. Firth: I asked the Minister how much the total project was going to be. He is not listening. We know that $1.5 million has already been spent. We want to know what the total cost is going to be for this facility. The people in Ross River would like to know that as well. We want to know the total capital cost of the project to completion.
Hon. Mr. Kimmerly: The Legislature has voted funds for this fiscal year. The cost, which is the up to the minute cost, for the project, which is completed to the scope that was planned and budgeted for so far, is exactly as I have stated: $1,516,000. There are additional funds to be budgeted that are appropriately discussed in the Estimates debate, and they will be met.
Mrs. Firth: Again, the Minister is telling everyone how to ask questions in the House. The Minister is telling us that there are no projected costs, that they do not know what it is going to cost. We submit that is an absolutely irresponsible way for this government to manage the taxpayers purse. The Minister of Community and Transportation Services does not even know what kind of heat there is going to be in the building. The Government Leader talked in the newspaper about ...
Speaker: Order please. Would the Member please get to the supplementary question?
Mrs. Firth: The Government Leader talked in the newspaper about the analysis.
Speaker: Only a one sentence preamble will be permitted.
Mrs. Firth: I would like to know who is doing that analysis, and when is it going to be ready for tabling?
Hon. Mr. Kimmerly: We previously discussed that in the supplementary estimates for the Department of Government Services, and I previously answered it. The final inspection took place on December 10, 1987. The work has just been completed. The Member opposite is obviously upset because she was caught out with irresponsibly bringing false information and allegations into this House yesterday and today. I have corrected that statement.
Question re: Ross River arena
Mr. Lang: This past year the people of the territory were asked to vote $750,000 for an arena in Ross River. Since that time, the price has gone to $1.5 million, and the Government Leader, in the summer, committed the government to doing an analysis of this project to see what had gone wrong with the facility. Can the Minister of Government Services tell me, to the best of his knowledge, what is the projected final cost of this facility when it is finished?
Hon. Mr. Kimmerly: The problem is in the definition of what this project is. The project, as it was proposed and budgeted for, is completed. The financial information is as I have given it. All Members are aware that there is an additional proposal for additional work. It will be discussed by the responsible Minister at the appropriate time.
Mr. Lang: What troubles me is that the Minister has, on his desk, notes that indicate exactly what has been the cost to date - he even mentioned a date of December 10. The concern I have is that the people of Ross River have an arena and are concerned about whether or not they can pay the Operation and Maintenance costs when it is completed, and the people of the territory have put $1.5 million to date into a facility that has not been completed. Could the Minister perhaps tell this House why he is not in possession of the projected costs for completion of this particular facility, especially when it has been front page news off and on for the last six months?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The capital budget information the Members have in front of them - again I say, already in front of them - shows an expenditure of approximately $150,000 for the plumbing and mechanical work to be done on phase two of the project, which incorporates the community hall phase of this particular project. It is not just an arena, it is an arena/community hall. That is the extent of the governments commitment for this project, and the project will be complete from the governments perspective.
Members have referred to the fact that the community is concerned about the Operation and Maintenance. I can say that, in advance of the project going ahead, the Operation and Maintenance commitments for the project were communicated to the community. They did understand the total cost that would be associated with the facility and they made recommendations in their own right, to ensure that the heating of the facility was kept to a minimum through wood heat and through the mechanisms that many community organizations such as the Ross River Community Association have to undertake in order to keep costs on their facilities down. There are a number of facilities around the territory for which the communities are responsible for the Operation and Maintenance, and that has always been the case and continues to be the case.
Mr. Lang: I just want to get on the record here so that somebody takes some responsibility here some time. Could I ask the Minister this: is he prepared to give his assurances to the House and the people of the territory that this facility, completed, is not going to exceed $1.7 million. Is that was he is telling this House?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I am telling the House exactly what I just said to the Legislature - that there is a commitment to date, on the record. There is a budgeted amount for $150,000 for the balance of the mechanical. If there is other work to be done that is desired by the Ross River Community Club, they can do it in their own right. The governments commitment to the project ends with the $150,000.
Speaker: The time for Question Period has now elapsed. We will proceed with Orders of the Day.
ORDERS OF THE DAY
Bill No. 76, Third Reading
Clerk: Third reading, Bill No. 76, standing in the name of the hon. Mr. Kimmerly.
Hon. Mr. Kimmerly: I move that Bill No. 76, An Act to Amend the Legal Profession Act, be now read a third time and do pass.
Speaker: It has been moved by the Minister of Justice that Bill No. 76 entitled An Act to Amend the Legal Profession Act be now read a third time and do pass.
Motion agreed to
Speaker: I declare the motion carried and that Bill No. 76 has passed this House.
Hon. Mr. Porter: I move that the Speaker do now leave the Chair and that the House resolve into Committee of the Whole.
Speaker: It has been moved by the hon. Government House Leader that the Speaker do now leave the Chair and that the House resolve into Committee of the Whole.
Motion agreed to
COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE
Chairman: The Committee of the Whole will now come to order. We will recess now for 15 minutes.
Bill No. 5 - First Appropriation Act, 1988-89 - continued
Chairman: The Committee of the Whole will now come to order. We will continue with the Department of Community and Transportation Services, general debate.
Mr. Lang: At the outset of the supplementaries, I asked the Minister if he could provide us with any information on projects that were approved over the past year that had not been identified in the supplementaries. I was asking about projects in the area of $20,000 or more. If the Minister has that information, could he provide it to the House?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The Elsa curling rink did not go ahead. We have had some discussion about the Ross River arena. The Teslin Indian Band water and sewer extension is a new project for $150,000. The Stewart Crossing staff quarters, worth $380,000 under budget, is on schedule. The Beaver Creek grader station is essentially complete for an amount of $300,000. There are a number of projects under budget. The Dawson Dome Road construction is on budget. The Klondike Highway, No. 2, BST from kilometre 538 to kilometre 660, was $317,000 under budget.
Under MOT airports, the amount budgeted for Dawson was not spent because relocation of the airport was being considered. It does not really matter to our coffers anyway, because any expenditures would be recoverable from MOT. Old Crow residential land development was undertaken for $131,000. Riverdale Block 275 land development was for $452,000. There was also Robinson Homestead development for $174,000. Those are the major projects.
Mr. Lang: I appreciate that information. Were there any projects that have not been identified in the previous Capital Budget or the Supplementary that the government approved, since Variance Four to now, in the neighbourhood of $20,000 or more? Maybe there are none.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: Apart from what I have just mentioned, I do not know of any projects. I will have my department check again with respect to Period Four to now and bring back whatever information they can. There may have been a misunderstanding on what was being requested in terms of new projects. I did mention the Teslin Indian Band sewer extension, the Old Crow residential land development, Robinson Homestead development and Riverdale land development. Those were all new projects. Those are the major projects. The land projects are, of course, recoverable.
Mr. Lang: With respect to the availability of land, this question has been one that has been cropping up on a continuous basis. Can the Minister provide for this House - for the communities of Watson Lake, because there is demand there, Dawson City and Whitehorse - what land is available for the purposes of building on when spring comes? In other words, what is available for an individual who wants to build a home?
In Dawson, there have been some concerns raised about the lack of land that is available, as far as serviced land is concerned and also now with what we see happening in Whitehorse and Watson Lake. The other concern that has been expressed is the question of the role the Yukon Housing Corporation is beginning to play in this area. Does the Minister have that information with him? If he does not, could he provide it for us?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: With respect to Watson Lake, there are 19 residential lots in the inventory. In Whitehorse, my information is there are 39 lots in the inventory for residential purposes. There is other land in country residential, and some in multiple residential, in Watson Lake.
In Dawson, in the governments inventory, there is no residential land available. That was addressed this current year when preliminary identification of the Dawson Dome rural residential lot development was initially studied. There is money in the Budget this year for phase one implementation of the construction of roads. In Dawson, there is very little land available in the town proper within the old boundary itself, because there is tremendous congestion there. The only lots available are through the private market and for sale by the City of Dawson, which has a few lots in its inventory.
The cost of purchasing the lots has been an issue in Dawson. That is one reason why the government and the City of Dawson identified land development on the Dome as being a priority with the community.
Mr. Lang: I want to go specifically into the question of the Whitehorse residential lots. Are the 39 urban lots serviced with water and sewer?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: In Crestview and Porter Creek. With respect to the ones in Crestview, I will have to check to see if they are all serviced.
Mr. Lang: How many lots are going to be made available over the 39 in the Whitehorse area in this forthcoming spring? Is that all the land that will be made available for people who want to build?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: With respect to Whitehorse itself, the only additional serviced residential lots we are projecting are the 113 lots in Granger Subdivision. There may be, as there were in Riverdale, some other sites identified between the city planners and YTG that might be developed in the interim. We had not identified Riverdale earlier on as a budgeted item and nevertheless went ahead with it this year. That released 19 lots, which I believe are sold.
We are projecting right now 113 lots in Granger to be fully serviced.
Mr. Lang: When will those lots be made available? What is the projected date for completion for these lots for sale?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: We are trying to ensure that things are done responsibly, but I would hope they would be available for sale by the end of the summer.
Mr. Lang: For the record, we are talking about a situation in Whitehorse where there are 39 lots available, and that is all that will be made available for the building season until the end of summer or early fall when Granger comes onstream. Is that correct?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: Yes. In terms of Government of Yukon lot development that is the plan at this time. If there are extensions to cul de sacs or roads that the city can identify, and if the City is not desirous of developing the land itself, it may ask the government to develop it, and we might consider that as we did in Riverdale. At this point the information I have is essentially as the Member stated.
Mr. Lang: That leads me to the other question that I have and it has to do with the lots that the Kwanlin Dun Indian Band received with respect to the move that took place up to Hillcrest. I am not clear, because I believe there were some changes to the agreement, wherein it had initially been agreed to by all the parties, and then when the new government came in there was a significant change as far as the agreement was concerned.
Is it legally possible for the land that now has been transferred to the Indian band to be sold to individuals as private lands, and title transferred to an individual who has purchased such a lot?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The lands under the Kwanlin Dun agreement - and I should go back to the agreement to verify this information - were to be held in fee simple, which means that they could be sold or traded on the open market. They were not considered lands set aside.
Mr. Lang: Does the Minister recall how many lots that we are speaking of?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I know that there were well over 100, but I will have to check on the actual number for the Member and bring it back.
Mr. Lang: Has there been any indication that those lots will be made available for sale in the forthcoming spring? Has the government made any inquiries to see what the intentions of the Indian Band are and whether or not they will be put up for sale?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: Yes, some inquiries have been made, but there has been some internal turmoil that has preoccupied the band the last little while, and we have received no answers.
Mr. McLachlan: I wanted to ask the Minister if he perhaps has a simpler, easier way of categorizing it, or defining the problem of when must the six municipalities that received block funding pay for a project out of their own funds, or when is it the type of project that can be applied for to the government? I realize there is something in the formula to do with the checklist, but as I look down the list, I see at least a couple that I believe would have been government funded, that they apparently have to pay for out of their own funds, and a couple that are also the other way.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I would appreciate getting some indication of what the Member specifically has in mind. All items - and it is listed in the regulations, I believe, in terms of the definition of municipal infrastructure - that are considered municipal infrastructure are to be first taken from block funding, except in those cases where the item or the project is two and a half times the size of the annual block fund. Then it is purely a Government of Yukon decision as to whether cost sharing, on a 90:10 basis will be undertaken.
If the Member has any specific questions, perhaps I will try to respond to those.
Mr. McLachlan: I am specifically thinking of situations where municipalities must use their own funds to build their own cemeteries, and I am thinking of a situation where a municipal fire alarm system for Carmacks is paid for by the government, yet the community is in receipt of $406,000, under the block funding program.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: Let me make reference to two items: cemeteries and fire alarm systems. With respect to cemeteries, if the cemetery is located within the municipality and owned by the municipality, the municipality must take care of it. I believe there are some exceptions but I would have to check to see what they were. With respect to cemeteries that may be Indian Band cemeteries, they would be the responsibility of the Band, I would presume.
As to fire alarm systems, it is interesting to note that all fire alarm systems are owned and maintained by the Government of Yukon, irrespective of the community.
In the Incorporation Agreement between the government and municipalities, there was an agreement struck with respect to the upgrading of fire services as a component of the deal in order to incorporate the community. The communities, back in 1984, indicated to the government that they would accept incorporation but did not want to be responsible for upgrading the fire fighting facilities in their communities, so various things were undertaken, such as the upgrading of equipment and new trucks, as part of the agreement. The difference is that, in the case of fire alarms, those are considered separate and apart and were not part of the agreement and are still owned and operated in total by the Government of Yukon.
Mr. McLachlan: The Member for Porter Creek East asked a question in relation to fire trucks that I think is important because these items are anywhere between $100,000 and $180,000. Is the Minister saying that new fire truck replacements must come out of the capital block funding, except with the provision where the Incorporation Agreement specifies that the government would provide them or upgrade them? I am unclear as to the purchasing of the trucks.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The sure answer is yes and no. To be perfectly accurate, the municipality will be responsible for the fire trucks apart from what has been agreed to under the Incorporation Agreement. It will not be responsible for it necessarily under the capital block fund, but will be responsible for it under the O&M equipment reserve fund, which they would establish in order to undertake the replacement of items such as fire trucks and other municipal vehicles.
Mr. Lang: I just want to go further on the land, if I could. In Watson Lake, the Minister referred to 19 lots. Could he tell me if those are serviced lots? My information is that there are very few available, and this is news to a lot of people.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: When we get to the line item, I will have my notes available to me. There are 19 lots; I do not know whether they are all serviced. I do know that the government is reactivating the Campbell Subdivision this coming year as part of the budget, and I believe that is serviced. I can get a breakdown as to which lots are serviced and which are not. I do not have that detail with me.
Mr. Lang: I do not understand about reactivating the Campbell Subdivision. We voted, in 1987-88, $35,000. Is he telling us that was not spent?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I did not bring last years expenditure plans with me. I will have to bring the information back.
Mr. Lang: I would appreciate that. Could the Minister tell us what type of policies the government has adopted for the banking of land?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: We have a policy that we will be trying to meet over the medium term to provide serviced land in the inventory of all classes in all communities. Up until now, we have been trying to respond to land as applications are provided. That generally gives a sense of priorities on where to develop land next.
Unfortunately, in some of the small communities, the land demand can come quite suddenly. Given the land development time, and the advance notice that is necessary to develop it and undertake community consultation, it is often difficult to respond to land needs that are sprung upon a community. The policy, over time, is to try and develop a range of land across all sectors with the priority being residential land at the present time - serviced residential in Whitehorse - so that demands can be met over the counter rather than after the fact.
Mr. Lang: It is a fact that people have not been able to get land over the counter here for the last three or four years. We are now looking at next year, and this government can bear full responsibility for the fact that land will not be made available. The Minister is not responding to my question.
I was referring to the government buying land. In the notes that were provided, there is close to $400,000 for what is known as land banking. What is land banking? What is the governments policy on land banking?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: Is the Member referring to the Yukon Housing Corporation?
Mr. Lang: I am not referring to the Yukon Housing Corporation but, if you want me to, I would be more than happy to. I am referring to the notes I have here as far as the information the Minister has provided, which I appreciate. It is just a total breakdown of all the dollars. In here, there are a number of items that denote land bank; $200,000, territory-wide. I guess it is Yukon Housing. Maybe I should save that for the Housing Corporation.
While I am talking about that, if I could give the Minister some notice of a question that is going to require research on the Housing Corporation. When we get to that particular area, could the Minister provide this House with the number of houses that are owned by the federal government, by the Indian bands and Indian Affairs, as well as those owned by the Grey Mountain Housing Society, and the location of those houses by community - so we have a full inventory of exactly how many houses are financed by the public purse?
With respect to land acquisition in Carmacks, they have $40,000 for the acquisition of land. What is the government acquiring land for - obviously, they must be doing it privately - and what are they doing with it?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: Is the Member referring to the Yukon Housing Corporation?
Mr. Lang: No, I am looking under Carmacks. It says $40,000 for the acquisition of land. It is in this document, Community Distribution by Community, 1988-89, Capital. It is the first page under Carmacks.
Mr. McLachlan: The document we are asking about was prepared by the Department of Finance, not by Community and Transportation Services, so the information the Minister may have may be in a slightly different form than this document.
Mr. Lang: In deference to the Minister, we seem to be having our problems. We can wait until we get the information.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: You will have to bear with me, because these are detailed information lists. I could respond to it easily when we get into line by line. I have found the information. This involves the purchase of private land to allow for the development of residential lots in a subdivision development in Carmacks.
The supply is exhausted there and the cost will essentially be for the subdivision and for the subsequent resale according to the land pricing policy.
Mr. Phelps: Looking through the documentation provided, I do not see anything here that pertains to land being made available in the Carcross area. Is the Department not going to do anything to make some lots available for the people of Carcross over the next 12 months?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The Department is going to make a good college try to make residential land available in the Carcross area, and they have to this point. The block land transfer the Member mentioned in Question Period some time ago is proposed primarily of already privately held land. There is not a good deal of land which would be considered land suitable for residential development. I have indicated to the Department that if there is land -even slivers of land - that could be counted for lot development, which is acceptable to the community, then that land development should be undertaken.
With respect to the Chooutla Subdivision, we have discussed that a number of times in the Legislature. The position of the government is clear. Land transfers from the federal government are not easy to be had and we have a standing request. It has not been transferred and the agreement that was formulated, formally or otherwise, with respect to the settling out of the distribution of the lots is an agreement which we still stand by. Apart from that, and that is not insignificant, the government is merely trying to ascertain what land might be made available outside those areas. If any land can be made available or transferred to the Yukon we will attempt to do so.
Mr. Phelps: We have been waiting and waiting and waiting for some building lots in Carcross. I know there is a large BLT. I do not want to stand here and make a decision as to where a subdivision could go. I would certainly suggest that if this government is not going to push to get the Chooutla Subdivision - which was developed at the taxpayers expense - transferred, then I would suggest that issue, and the issue of how to get some more lots on the market, might be discussed at a public meeting in Carcross where the public can come out, sit down and find out what the hell is wrong. There is a whole bunch of people who have been patiently, and now, not too patiently, waiting to get some land to build on. Would the Minister consider sending officials out to have a special public meeting at Carcross directed solely at the issue of getting some building lots available for the public? Will he consider that?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: It is not true to say that the government is not pushing to get the Chooutla Subdivision transferred. That is not the case, as has been reiterated many times. The government is attempting to ascertain what land might be available. I am told that most of the land in the block land transfer is privately owned and much of it is not suitable for residential construction. I have asked the Department, as I have indicated already, to determine what land might be available that is considered Crown land and even has the remotest possibility for residential construction, to identify it and if there is any possibility for residential land development - as I say, even slivers of land here and there, spot land in essence - they ought to give serious consideration to such development. In these cases, certainly community consultation is essential and similar consultation has been undertaken in other places where land development is to take place.
So, certainly, there will be some community consultation. The Lands Branch is trying to ascertain what slivers of land might be available for residential development, but in terms of subdivision development there just is not the land available, I am told.
Mr. Phelps: I do not think the Minister is hearing somehow. What we have is an emergency situation in Carcross, where ten percent of the people are looking for a place to build so that they can live, in Carcross. Nothing has been done in the last two or three years: nothing. What I am suggesting is that this is an emergency situation in Carcross; I see nothing in this budget to deal with the problem. the Government Leader came out and had a public meeting last summer - I chaired it - and that was the major concern of the people there, and I am sure he agrees that that was the case. It was fully reported in the media here that that was the concern. There is nothing in this budget that shows that anything is going to be done. The territorial government owns a lot of land out there. Some of it was suitable enough to suggest a large territorial park could be built on it, within that block land transfer. I am not suggesting that here; I am not going to stand up and say you can put X lots here or there. But surely, the Minister can understand this is an emergency situation, and will he call an emergency meeting solely for the purpose of his officials getting together with the public to try and come up with a solution, at least on an interim basis?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The government is well aware of the need for residential lots in the Carcross area. The concerns transmitted by the people of Carcross at the public meeting were transmitted to me personally. I am aware of the need for residential land development. It does no good to develop federal Crown land, as we should note from the Chooutla development, because it does not guarantee that the land will be transferred to us so that we can transfer it to individuals. As I have indicated to the Member already, with respect to the block land transfer itself, if they can identify land suitable for residential land development, we should undertake it. We have undertaken a number of lands projects that were not specifically identified in the budget because opportunities arose to develop land and we will undertake to develop land; it is cost recoverable in any case. The Member for Porter Creek East does not seem to understand that it is cost recoverable. It is cost recoverable.
I have already indicated that it is the intention to try to identify sites for land development irrespective of whether it is a large subdivision, a small subdivision or even lot by lot, to try to make land available within what are otherwise Yukon lands. When the lands have been identified and mapped specifically, and we know what land is available, then very definitely there will be a meeting in Carcross to discuss land development in Carcross, and what is acceptable to the people in Carcross.
I think it would not be reasonable to go back to the people of Carcross, after having heard from them that they want land developed, without something more concrete than simply to listen to them again so that they can tell us that they want more land developed.
As I have indicated to the Members, we are ascertaining at this moment what land might be available under the block land transfer. I have been told that there is not much land available but I defer to the Members understanding of the situation in Carcross - it is the community that he represents - and in any case, they are trying to determine what land is available for any kind of residential development.
Mr. Phelps: I am simply asking for an emergency meeting soon. It would not take very long for the Department officials to talk with Renewable Resources and get the area on the map where the territorial park proposal was, back in 1983, or or to canvas another area which is just outside the boundary, between the Carcross Road and the Tagish Road, on that ridge, and the Chooutla school, and put all these on the table, invite everybody in the community to a meeting, and let us try to get some direction and address this problem. I am concerned that there is a reluctance to call that kind of meeting and I am also concerned that there is nothing in this budget to deal with this urgent need. There is not a community in this territory that has a need as great as Carcross has for some lots.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I would not say that that is necessarily the case. Certainly the Member for Hootalinqua is concerned about the availability of lots in Carcross and I think that it is important that he is. There are other communities that are concerned about land development as well. I think there is a furious agreement that a meeting should take place and the difference of opinion is that the Member for Hootalinqua wants to call it an emergency meeting, and I would like to call it a regular, consultative meeting, but there is no disagreement with respect to the fact that a meeting should take place.
Mr. Phelps: How soon can we anticipate the public being notified of a meeting, and when it will take place and what the agenda will be, because I would like to see that out early in the new year and I would like the public, the Carcross residents, to be fully notified about the meeting, because they want a meeting like this.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: As with all public meetings, I would like the public to be fully notified as well and there is every attempt to do just that. I would say that it would be early in the year, too, but I will reserve any deadline for discussions with Lands Branch officials.
Mr. Phelps: Will the Minister take steps to ensure that I am notified of the time and the manner of the meeting?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The Member knows that I am very respectful of his wishes, as I am of the wishes of the Members for all constituencies, and he will be consulted, as is normal.
Mr. Phelps: I thank the Minister for that; he has been pretty good. Some of his officials have not been quite as prompt, but I know that he intends that I be notified of such meetings. My other question, and perhaps it is a bit too detailed, but I see on the long list there is mention of Annie Lake residential, $50,000. I am just wondering if he can tell me, generally: is there a new residential area being opened up at Annie Lake?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: My recollection is that in consultation with community association in the Robinson area, some discussion about in-fill should take place on the Carcross Road in the area of Annie Lake. It is not a subdivision but rather identification of sites for lot development.
Mr. Phelps: I just ask that in due course I be given any pertinent information about that project, if there is some paper that I can have.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I will send the Member a note.
Mr. Lang: We talked about the reactivation of the Campbell Subdivision and the $35,000 that we voted last year. Now we are being asked to vote it again. It has been expressed by a number of people that there is going to be a shortage of land in Watson Lake as well as in Whitehorse. We have also seen that there is a problem in Dawson City. Can the Minister, when we get into details of various areas on communities, provide us with the projections that are required for the communities and what the government is intending to do with serviced lots, for example, water and sewer extensions?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I will undertake to do that.
Chairman: Is there any further general debate on this department?
Mr. Brewster: I would just like to read something into the record. I do not think that we need any more debate. We had enough of that last night on the operation and maintenance of a lot of buildings. In Haines Junction, the curling rink is $12,500; the community club is $18,920; the arena is $17,000, and it was only used in January. The swimming pool is $36,000, and they also get a grant of $8,000. Haines Junction seems to be a little more fortunate than other places in one way in that it has a lot of government buildings, and therefore we have a good tax base, which other smaller communities like Beaver Creek do not have.
I am unfolding a map; I see the Minister smiling. The Department of Community and Transportation does not seem to read Hansard very good. On December 15, 1986, the hon. Mr. McDonald said, I will undertake to have a review of the project done this winter and see if there is any work that can be done to improve the situation this coming summer. If it requires more of an expenditure in the future, perhaps I will talk to the Member for Kluane, and we will pursue it further.
The Minister did not contact the Member for Kluane. I understand that, I have no problem with it. I appreciated the maps in 1986 when I got them. I explained very forcefully, on quite a few pages, that the Minister missed an 83 mile road. Maybe it is gone and Alaska has it. The funny thing about it is that the Department of Renewable Resources has two campgrounds on it, and the tourists are supposed to climb this thing. This creates a little problem. I think the government should grade it and look after it a little more seeing as how Northern Canada Power Commission has a big dam in there.
Right now what is happening is the territorial government - I do not know how they ever found it - grades it for 15 miles to keep the snow off it. You cannot even find it on a map, but they grade it. From there on, there is a private contractor who goes on up to the Aishihik Dam. Unfortunately, this still does not solve the question of the campground, because they are above that. I would suggest to the Minister that, if we are going to leave it off the map and are not going to look after it, maybe we should be pulling those campgrounds out of there. Would the Minister like to comment on that?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I apologize to the Member for not having incorporated the Aishihik Road on the map. This is not a road that is given to tourists, thankfully, so they will not miss the fact that there are two campgrounds on this particular road. Next year - and it is all in Hansard - there will be an effort to show that road on the map that I may table next fall. I think the maps are a good idea, even though they do leave off the Aishihik Road and McQuesten Road. We put Duck Creek Road on here, but only barely. The road the Member mentions will show on the next map, but tourists will not go there and I do not think there is any worry that tourists will be misled that there are no campgrounds on the road.
Mr. Brewster: I wonder if he even lives in the Yukon. Otter Falls is up there, which used to be on the $5.00 bill for many years, and many tourists go up there, and a lot from Whitehorse go up there. To make a dumb statement like that, with the Minister of Renewable Resources right behind him - who has two campgrounds that he hauls wood into - and the Minister of Community and Transportation Services makes a statement that there are no tourists on it.
I have gotten my promise one year later. They often complain we do not give them advance notice. I gave them advance notice one year ago, and I got my promise. So it took a year. I hope the Minister does not put on a little bit of a road that he put on the one in Stanton, because it goes much further than that. If the Minister would ever decide to look at it and to look over the whole project of the Yukon, there is only 40 miles difference between that and the Mount Nansen Road. And all the ore and everything would be coming down in a shorter route down into Haines where it belonged in the first place, and we would not be blowing all this money to look after other people. This project has been on for a long time, but it is stopped by politicians and that, who look for votes and do not look for practicality.
I would like to go on to the airport in Haines Junction. I see we have $21,000; the Minister laughs. Last spring, the Windy Craggy Mine flew over one million pounds of stuff out of there and are now flying two planes a day out of Whitehorse. We probably could have had some of that if we had lights. I notice when you go to Old Crow you see they get $588,000 for the airport. I am not condemning Old Crow for getting that, but I would like to point out that they do have lights and a building and we have absolutely nothing. If these mines got going, Haines Junction could be standing on its own feet.
Does the Member for Old Crow want to talk or is she just yapping away? If she would like to stand up she can stand up.
I point out that the road in Haines Junction was done and surveyed about four to five years ago and for some reason always gets bounced off the plans and does not go ahead. I point out that there is a greater population around there than there is in the Old Crow area, if you want to look at populations. As I said I am not condemning the Old Crow area, but they do have lights - the lights are on all the time - and they do have a building. We do not have any of that. We are trying to stand on our own feet and trying to make a basis for business. If the Windy Craggy Mine goes and a few other mines - there are six of them now exploring in that area - Haines Junction, with an airport, could get some of this business. The way it is now it is all being flown out of Whitehorse and I do not think anybody can deny that.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I did not say that there were no tourists on the Aishihik Road. I said that the tourists would not be fed with these maps that do not indicate that there is an Aishihik Road. That is the point I was trying to make.
With respect to the Old Crow priorities, that is one community with no other access other than the airport - unless people want to take the river. So when MOT made its priorities known, they obviously made Old Crow a priority, given that it is the only community in the territory without road access. That is not to say that there is no interest in upgrading the Haines Junction airport. I have indicated to Members already that this government has been lobbying with MOT, which owns the airport and has to approve all capital expenditures, every last penny. There has been lobbying to upgrade the Haines Junction airport; lights and general upgrading. I have indicated in the House that at least at the negotiation level, we have taken a position with respect to the transfer of Arctic B & C airports, that the Haines Junction airport should be fully upgraded. We have not got disagreement at the officials level, so far. I can say that the government is aware of the activity at the airport and is interested in seeing the airport upgraded. There is no doubt about that.
Mr. Lang: I want to reinforce what the Member for Kluane has submitted to this House. It has just come to my attention that over this past year, over 300 DC3 loads have been flown to Windy Craggy in this past calendar year and that is a substantial amount of cargo going in to anywhere, I do not care into whatever area, including into Whitehorse. So it is quite a financial impact and I understand that the company in question is purchasing a lot of their supplies locally, as much as they possibly can, and subscribe to the principle that they should be conducting business with local business, as opposed to with businesses south of the Yukon. It would seem to me, in view of that type of activity, that there should be enough economic activity to justify the upgrading of that particular airport. I think it is too bad if we get into a situation of one airport versus another, but I really think that if there is only so much money, then a serious consideration has to be given as far as priorities are concerned.
Could the Minister outline to us what priorities his government presented to the Ministry of Transport, as far as the dispersing of money is concerned?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The priorities that we placed on airports included the Old Crow airport, and also the Haines Junction airport.
We are repeating ourselves. We are aware of the activity on the airport. I am aware of the work that is being done by the mining companies. I do know that the airport is more heavily used that it was before. We have expressed the need to upgrade the airport in transfer negotiations and in the normal capital budgeting process. The money that is put in the budget is primarily for design, to ensure that the airport is upgraded. It is on the MOTs list as well, if I can speak briefly on their behalf. They are aware of the need to upgrade the airport, and the airport will be upgraded, funding permitted, either through the transfer negotiations or through the normal capital process. Money will be made available, as per current plan, to upgrade that airport.
Mr. Lang: The Minister said earlier, though, that the officials of MOT had not accepted the principle that that particular airport should be upgraded to the point where it had lights. And that is what concerns this side, that the position is being put forward, on a continuous basis, to that particular department, and my question is: what are the federal governments reasons for not accepting the principle that that particular airstrip be upgraded to the point where it would have lights? Why are they not accepting that principle?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: First of all, I do not answer for MOT. Secondly, I did not say that they had not agreed, I said that up until the time that the Member was asking the question in the House before, they had not incorporated Haines Junction into their capital plan. Subsequently, in discussions, the officials have incorporated Haines Junction into the capital plan and there is every intention of upgrading that airport, whether it be as a result of the transfer negotiations, or MOT doing it through their normal capital budgeting process.
Mr. Lang: If it is incorporated in the plan, what is the projected date or year when this work is going to be done?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The actual completion date I am not sure of, but the work will start next year and more major work will be undertaken the year after that. I do not have the capital plan in front of me, in terms of general projections, but I will bring that information back.
Mr. Brewster: I apologize to the Minister for not hearing him. I probably had my hearing aid shut off. I get a little tired of some of the things that go on here; I guess I did not switch it back on in time. I am very sorry for that.
I see there is absolutely nothing for the Alaska Highway north, which is an absolute disgrace to the Yukon, to Canada, and everybody else. We stand and kick free trade apart and say we want nothing to do with the Americans. They are going to put the money in to build that road. When are we going to stand up on our own feet and fix this main route through the Yukon, so that people can drive on it without shaking themselves all up and putting their backs out. I have been here five years and for five years I have been screaming for something to be done. So they drop a grader blade and tear up all the chipseal they put on, and put down a little gravel; but pretty soon it is all back into mud and they put chipseal back on, and then you cannot even stay on it. I would think it is about time this government started to realise that the Americans are not going to foot the bill for the rest of their lives in Canada.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: We realise that fact. Better than a year ago, after having discussions with the State of Alaska, their Department of Transportation and Public Buildings, who indicated that work on the Shakwak project north of Haines Junction was not a high priority for the State, but they would give consideration, and subsequently have given consideration and approval, to perform the Shakwak work south of Haines Junction. In recognizing that the State of Alaska was not, in all likelihood, interested in pursuing the terms of the agreement struck to upgrade the Alaska Highway north from Haines Junction to the border, I met with the Minister responsible for Public Works and indicated to him it was my impression, after having had discussions with people in both the Governors office and in the Department and in the Legislature, that it would be very unlikely that the State of Alaska would encourage U.S. federal expenditures on that particular road. The Minister, at that point, recognising that it was a federal road and recognising that it would have fallen on DPWs shoulders to upgrade the road, suggested that he be given the opportunity to take this up with the American Ambassador with whom he would be meeting. He indicated that he was going to get back to me with the results of those discussions, but that was well over a year ago and he has not yet had time to do that, I presume, but he has written with respect to the Alaska Highway generally and DPWs plans for upgrading the Alaska Highway generally. He indicated that the work in British Columbia was the higher priority and that, in fact, no work would be done in the Yukon. We have vigorously stated, both the Minister of Tourism and I, to not only the Minister of State for Tourism but also to Mr. McInnes, the Minister responsible for DPW, that this is a major artery and it has to be upgraded.
It is an expensive project but, nevertheless, a necessary one for the long term health of the transportation and tourism industry in the territory. We are aware of the project. We have been spending a good deal of time communicating our interest to the federal government. We hope that the federal government will see its way clear to providing an increase of Capital expenditures on the road. Unfortunately, on the Capital side and on the Operation and Maintenance side, expenditures have been cut back. We have protested - we have not made a big, public deal of it - the fact and indicated that these are major arteries and they should be given adequate attention.
Mr. Brewster: I would just suggest to the Minister that he says north from Haines Junction. Let us get this turned around and come south from the border at Beaver Creek where the road is worse, because a lot of the road down at this end is done. From the Donjek Bridge up, there is absolutely no road better up here.
Another thing that people along the highway have brought up, and now the National Parks is jumping all over me on it, is that the RVs pull in the gravel pits along the road and flush their toilets and septic tanks out. It used to be acceptable when there was a couple of hundred of them, but now there are 500 and 600 of them, and they are making some awful messes. I have been fighting this one ever since I have been in the Legislature, too. We did get some signs up, but the signs are just the ones that say do this and this, and most tourists do not know what that means, same as they do not know what a checkerboard sign means.
Something has to be done, because there are more and more RVs every year, and they are flushing their tanks in these places. Some of these gravel pits are in a very bad mess. I realize that the Department of Highways is going to come back and say that, if they want some gravel, they would have to open it up again. Yes, they would. If they want gravel, they have to bring a loader down to pick the gravel up so it does not take much to put a little road in between. The last time I succeeded in getting this started, with the cooperation of the Minister of Renewable Resources, we got an over zealous individual working for the Department of Highways who closed every road up for 60 miles. Of course, then he had everybody who had little cabins and fishing areas pretty mad. This is unacceptable. Nobody I know of ever issued those orders. I think the Minister of Renewable Resources took a little heat on it, too.
There are some gravel pits that are not even being used, and there are 15 or 20 trailers in there every night flushing tanks all over. When I come to Whitehorse in the morning, I can count 25 to 30 trailers in at Mendenhall and these places, and they are all flushing their tanks. We are going to have a serious problem. I do not know how you are going to do it. I realize you do not have the money to have a guy running around chasing all these people, and I do not think that is what you do with your tourists anyway. Somehow, we have to figure out a decent sign that we can put there asking people not to do this and tell them where the next campgrounds are. Even National Parks has realized that they have a program, although most of the national park is so far away that the territorial government is going to have to look after it because it is all on roads that the territorial government looks after.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The Member is quite right that there was some overzealousness on the part of some highway maintenance crews to perhaps overdo the job of closing down gravel pits. The policy is clearly that gravel pits that are not in use have to be closed. We will certainly be trying to ensure that gravel pits that are in use, but are not being used on a daily basis, will be closed off even temporarily - so that recreational vehicles cannot make use of them for the purposes of camping or flushing their toilets. That policy is in place and I would hope that in terms of declaring the policy, it is done more sensitively and more effectively.
Mr. Brewster: I would like to thank the Minister for that answer. Maybe it pays to not get Aishihik on the map, because we seem to be getting along pretty good here.
I have a couple of comments. One is on the training room at Destruction Bay, which the Minister took after me on. I would like to point out that the one in Haines Junction, where we probably have the best fire department in any of the small communities, was turned back to the territorial government years ago. They will not use the training room because they will not pay the rent on it and they do not need it. That is what I was trying to get at and I did not get the words the right way. There is a question of whether they really need one for $100,000. I am not saying they do not need something, I am not saying they do not need repairs, but these training rooms are used maybe twice a year and, at the most, maybe three times. The one at Haines Junction was just turned back and they would not even pay the rent on it. They turned it back to the territorial government.
The other point is about the garbage dump at Beaver Creek. I hope it is on this side of the Customs building, because the last time we got in on the wrong side and we just about had a revolution. If it is not on this side of Customs, I would suggest that if the Minister wants to live around Beaver Creek, he had better change his plans and move it - because they do not like hauling their garbage through Customs and then having to be searched when they come back. It is rather ridiculous because they are still in Canada for 25 miles, but that is where Customs are and that is where they are checked.
One other thing. I would like to know in Burwash Landing who is to be consulted. I had complaints from the taxpayers there that they are never consulted on any of the things that are coming to the area. Unless they are things related to the band, then there is no problem. But some of the other things that the whole community should be getting, they are not consulted on. They feel they should be.
I would like one more thing to go on record about Haines Junction and the sewer line down to the Champagne Aishihik Band. It should have been done about nine or ten years ago, and I would like it to go on record that we held up a year waiting, and Chief Ray Jackson said they would never join the sewer line with us - so do not let anybody blame anybody but themselves because they were not on. We held up a year waiting, and now it is a lot of extra cost. It is very foolish and did not have to be, because it could have all been put in at once.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I am very familiar with the controversy that can arise over the location of the garbage dump. The recent controversy is about the Member for Hootalinquas riding. In the attempt to find appropriate places for garbage dumps, it has to be considered that most people do not want the garbage dumps located within visual sight distance of their homes or where they travel back and forth on a daily basis. There is an out of sight, out of mind view concerning disposal of garbage. Unfortunately, the alternatives have a tendency to take on higher costs and we have to start talking about transfer points in garbage disposal sites development. There is every attempt to find land fill sites for garbage dump locations.
In the community of Beaver Creek every attempt - perhaps the Member is willing to assist - will be made to find a suitable location for a garbage dump. I have no intention of going to the community and stick handling some violent public meetings on the subject. Every attempt will be made by the staff to locate a controversy-free garbage dump location. The Members advice on location will be taken into consideration, I can assure him.
I will undertake to ensure that the non-band members are consulted on matters of the community of Burwash Landing. That is important. I am familiar with the debate on the placement of the Haines Junction water and sewer extension that is attached to the municipal system, and the controversy that has taken place in the past. I participated in discussions with the band and the municipality on placement of services. I hope that this is a harbinger of good will and good intention on the part of both the band community and the municipality. This is the first community that we have been able to ascertain conclusively that that will does exist in spades. We are hoping that the will also exist in other communities, such as Mayo, which will be facing the same sorts of issues in coming years.
Mr. Brewster: I would like to thank the Minister on the offer to Beaver Creek. I have to get votes up there, so I will leave him by himself on that one.
Down at Haines Junction/Champagne, I do not want anyone to get the impression they should not have sewer and water. I think they should have had it nine years ago, but I also do not want all the blame put on the one side. It has taken us nine years to grow up there, and I think you are quite correct that we have grown up there faster than the rest of the Yukon - because we do get along quite well on a great many of things. In that area, I think we can be very proud of that; we use the same community halls, we use everything that helps contribute. I think we have grown up and I think the rest of the Yukon should catch up to us.
Mr. McLachlan: In the Ministers opening remarks yesterday in general debate, he made reference to residential lots in Ross River. It is quite important for the mine that is coming on stream in May of 1988 there. I am curious to learn if the lots that are planned are as a result of a request put forward by the community to be able to service this need, or is it the intention of the Minister to use these residential lots for a social housing program?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The lots are going to be sold as per the land regulations. They will be offered by lottery, and people who apply for the land and try the lottery will get the lots.
Mr. McLachlan: How many lots are there to be developed in Ross River in the coming year?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I believe this is the design for lots in Ross River, not the construction of lots in Ross River. According to the Orderly Development of Land Policy, this is the first phase of land development in Ross River. The phase is identifying available land, planning the land, and doing the engineering work, so the land development can then take place.
Mr. Phelps: With respect to street lights for Carcross, when are these lights going to be installed? This has been going for over a year now.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: He gave me notice and I thank him for that. If I could remember the answer, we would be fine. The answer is that, when I wrote the Member a letter, in October, I believe, saying the lights would go up in probably a month, we were basing that on Yukon Electrics work plan where they thought they could complete the installation within that one month period. However, Yukon Electrics workplan was overworked in some respects and they were unable to do it. We checked this week and my information was - and I will hear about it tomorrow if it is not correct, I am sure - that the poles were to go up either yesterday or today and the lights were to go up the very next day. So, if the Member wants to drive home to Carcross tonight and check it out for me, I would appreciate it.
Mr. Lang: I want to go back over on the question of the Alaska Highway and federal public works. Is the Minister informing this House that there is not going to be any federal money spent on the Alaska Highway in the Yukon this forthcoming construction season?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: My understanding is that there will be no capital spent. I will check on the actual details. There may be some light construction but there will not be any major construction on the Alaska Highway in the Yukon, either Whitehorse north or Whitehorse south, in the coming year. I will check on the actual details for the Member, but I am sure there is no major work.
Mr. Lang: I want to register my very, very serious concern that this particular construction plan has been obviously halted by the Government of Canada. Quite frankly, I think we are starting to reap the results of not having Erik Nielsen in Ottawa. I just want to say that I think maybe all pressure that can be brought to bear by the government and perhaps in this particular case our Member of Parliament could, along with tabling all these petitions on plutonium, find some time to raise questions on what has happened to the Alaska Highway and the federal governments responsibility. I would like to ask the Minister if he would be prepared to table all the correspondence he and the government have had on this issue, pressing the government for continuation of the reconstruction program for the Alaska Highway.
Hon. Mr. Porter: As Members can appreciate, inasmuch as the Alaska Highway is of concern to the residents on the north Alaska Highway, it is of concern to the people on the south. This continues to be a major issue with the people of Watson Lake and my understanding, when I was last down there, was that they had a meeting previous to my visit, with Audrey McLaughlin, when she was there - she is our Member of Parliament - and the community did impress upon her that she should raise the question with the Minister of Highways, the Minister responsible for Public Works. Our office is also following up with our Member of Parliament on that question. As well, we have continuously made representation to the federal Minister of Highways to get the federal government to agree on this. So far we have not been successful but I think that it is fair to say all Members of this House, regardless of which party we support politically, are in agreement on the question that the federal government has not been doing its job on the Alaska Highway and it may be that we should maybe look at a resolution or a statement from this House to that effect.
Mr. Lang: I want to ensure all Members that this side of the House will be bringing in a motion tomorrow in respect to this. It has already been discussed at one time by a motion raised, I believe, by this side of the House as well and I would ask now: could the Ministers table all the correspondence that has been directed to the Government of Canada on this issue, as far as representation being made on behalf of the people of the territory for the continuation of this capital program?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I certainly can, and will be happy to. I think that the government has expressed itself upon a number of occasions to Mr. McInnes, Minister of Supply and Services, and Mr. Valcourt, Minister of Tourism, in 1986, and we have also had a meeting personally with Mr. McInnes where this was one item that was discussed with him, as I mentioned already once. I have also, this year, asked the deputy minister to meet with deputy ministers in the federal departments, twice, to make sure that the federal government knows the position that this government holds with respect to the upgrading of this particular road. I think it is important to note the decline in construction activity. There is an increase in maintenance costs associated with that.
Unfortunately, there has not only been no increase in maintenance costs, but a decrease in maintenance provided to the Yukon government in order to maintain the road and the Department of Highway is valiantly trying to work within the budget that it is allocated. That means that certain, special projects, at least this year, have had to have been dropped in order that the basic maintenance could take place, but if this goes on much further then clearly the maintenance of that road is going to drop to an unacceptable level, to a completely unacceptable level.
Definitely, in response to the Members initial question, the Member for Parliament for the Yukon has communicated with my office on a number of occasions on this governments position with respect to the road, and I have indicated to her what it is. I have shared it with her, and she has undertaken to take the matter up in the House of Commons.
It is true to say that a great deal of effort has been made to impress upon federal authorities the importance to the tourism industry and to the communities along the road, this particular artery. It is a fairly significant project. It would be north of Haines Junction to the border, or from the border back to Haines Junction. It probably would be in the neighbourhood of $200 million to get it to normal class highway standards, which is a fairly major investment. We have not asked the federal government to provide the investment all in one year. That would be unreasonable, but we have asked that they begin to show some interest in upgrading the highway. To give the federal Minister his due, he has indicated that he is aware of the problem, has heard representations from various MPs about the condition of the Alaska Highway and, in his judgment, has decided that in the era of cutbacks that he is going to face, any monies that are available for this highway will be spent in British Columbia. That was his response to me.
We have indicated that the problem areas in British Columbia are severe and also have to be addressed but, also, the roadway in Yukon has to be addressed. We have repeated that many times.
Mr. Lang: Could the Minister outline to us how much money is projected to be spent in the British Columbia section for this coming year?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I do not know what the Department of Public Works is going to spend in British Columbia. I can ask the department to ask DPW for that information.
Mr. Lang: We should have an idea of what they are spending in British Columbia, if the government has been told the priority is B.C. I am sure they would have indicated to the government what projected costs are going to be incurred by the Government of Canada in that particular venture that they have decided is a priority. I would expect the government would have that information.
Once again, I feel strongly that we are going to have to take some action in this area. It has been far too quiet, because nobody is aware of what has or has not taken place.
Since we are not taking on our responsibilities as Canadians, I would like to move to the American side, where they seem to be taking a fair amount of responsibility for our roads. What is happening as far as the Shakwak Valley Project is concerned for this coming year?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: We received indication from the American side that they will commit all necessary funding to finish the Shakwak project south of Haines Junction. The road will be either pavement or BST standard between Haines Junction and Haines, Alaska. They have committed that through the sources of US federal funding and the points they have been credited with in highway maintenance.
Mr. Lang: Could the Minister give us an idea of the scope of the work? How much money will be spent in the coming year on the Shakwak Valley Project? Will it be completed in the fall of this year?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I will bring back the construction details for the Member. It would be worthwhile providing that information to the House.
Mr. Lang: There was an area that was discussed the other night and was then left. The government has provided a list of the projects that it will be undertaking in the coming year. That is a good idea to give some indication to contractors, or anyone interested, of the scope of the work that is being projected for communities. It is a good informative exercise to go through.
There is the intent, in some cases, to have organizations other than the Government of the Yukon Territory contracting this work, whether it be municipalities, Indian bands or community organizations. I have a concern about the financial responsibility to ensure the objectives and the principles of the Financial Administration Act are met. It must be ensured that these contracts are tendered out fairly and are perceived to be fair with respect to the work that is being done.
When I see contracts as high as $300,000 and $400,000 tentatively scheduled to be tendered by organizations other than the Government of the Yukon Territory, it causes concern. Is it the Ministers intention to ensure that, if organizations or municipalities take on this type of responsibility, that he has in place regulations that ensure that this money is allocated in a proper manner?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: In the case of community organizations, prior to any CAP agreement being signed. There is discussion taking place between the government and the community organizations on the managerial capabilities, the administrative competence and the way the community wants to undertake the project. It is voluntary on the part of the municipalities on how they undertake various works. The matter has been discussed with the municipalities, and the government in aid of those municipalities, have not had the benefit of a contracting bylaw. A draft bylaw may have to be drafted to meet their needs.
Chairman: Order, please. I have had an urgent request from the Clerk of Committee to take a brief recess. Do any Members have objections?
We will now recess for 15 minutes.
Chairman: The Committee of the Whole will now come to order. We will continue with general debate, department of Community and Transportation Services.
Mr. Lang: I want to go further with respect to the tendering procedures, or the lack thereof, that are required when the government transfers large amounts of dollars to various organizations and municipalities. The government is totally usurping and shirking their responsibilities. If we are going to ask any individual or individuals to do a project, we should have the responsibility to ensure that they are adhering to the rules of our contract regulations.
I can understand a transfer of dollars to a community organization for some make work projects of $15,000 to $20,000. When we start talking $300,000 and higher, we have a responsibility to make it a term of the transfer that the government puts something into place to ensure that the money will be administered properly. How else are they going to be accountable to this House if we permit just a no-strings-attached transfer of dollars? I would like to know what the Minister is going to do to ensure that something is put into place prior to the transfer of large amounts of dollars.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: We have a stark disagreement regarding the governments intentions for the transfer of responsibilities from the territorial to municipal level. I do not regard the transfer of that responsibility to municipalities as shirking responsibilities. It is a legitimate transfer to municipal authorities and elected politicians in municipalities, who are responsible to their taxpayers in the same manner as the transfer of responsibility that has taken place between the Government of Canada to the Government of the Yukon.
The matter of putting tendering procedures in place has been discussed with the Association of Yukon Communities and member communities. They believe that it would be appropriate to have a model bylaw developed that might be used as an example. They can then expand upon the existing bylaws. They all have procedures for tendering projects at the present time. When the devolution of responsibility takes place, it takes place not only for tendering but for project design, for project management and for the ultimate use of that project.
I regard that as a transfer of responsibility to duly elected people in the communities. I do not regard that as shirking responsibility at all, I regard that as a transfer of responsibility from this government to other governments.
Mr. Lang: I just want to point out to the Minister that he is wrong about the federal devolution of responsibility to the Yukon Government. For an example, when we took over the responsibility of income tax we were required to pass in this House an Income Tax Act. They just did not hand over a bunch of money and say, Give us a call in 12 months and tell us how you did. To go further into what the Minister is saying as regards this model bylaw: does he have a model bylaw that has been prepared and brought forward as far as a bylaw that could be enacted by all the municipalities?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The last time I addressed the issue, the Association of Yukon Communities and the Department of Community Services were getting together to draft, at the administrative level, such a model bylaw which could be used by communities if they wished.
Mr. Lang: My question is, has it been drafted? Has it been finished? Is there anything he can table in the House on what has developed with respect to this type of bylaw so the communities can perhaps accept it? Hopefully, they would adopt it and then there would also be some continuity throughout the territory as far as contractors are concerned, so that they can meet whatever procedures have been developed.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I just indicated that the last time I looked into this the Association of Yukon Communities and the Department of Community Services were getting together. With respect to a snapshot, I can perhaps provide the Member tomorrow with a snapshot of where the process is at the present time.
Mr. Lang: How is this going to apply, for example, to Indian bands? Are they going to have to follow contract regulations?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: As I indicated before, community groups other than municipalities, the manner in which the project is undertaken can be determined in a number of ways. Firstly, if the project is to be tendered in the formal sense, the government will undertake to ensure that all the is are dotted and the ts are crossed. With respect to some projects, which are projects managed by band or by community group - there has to be some assurance that the group taking the work has project management capabilities.
Mr. Lang: Let us first cross the ts and dot the is, and use the band or a community organization as an example. At that stage, if the project is going to go out to tender, will it go under the auspices of the YTG, if YTG is involved?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: If YTG tenders it then there is no capital agreement and no responsibility for the community organization for the project whatsoever. The whole point of the capital agreement and LEOP projects themselves is that the community organizations take full responsibility for the project and manage the project themselves. We do undertake with community groups that where it is appropriate, according to our rules that projects be tendered, we encourage the groups to tender the project. Where the groups want to project manage and are capable of construction managing a project, and can prove they have the capability to do so, we will allow that as well.
Mr. Lang: I want to get this clear and on the record, because it is a very important area for the contracting industry and as far as the general taxpayer is concerned with respect to the rules that will be followed as far as the expenditure of taxpayers dollars. Is it the position of the government that if they transfer $300,000 to a community organization that they will be able to project manage that particular project in the manner that they want and they will not have to follow any of the rules set down by the Legislature via the Financial Administration Act and the contract regulations? Is that the position of the government?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: That has been the position of the government for as long as I can remember, well before my time, with respect to capital agreements. That has always been the position of the government. When capital agreements are signed in communities they transfer the responsibility for the project to a community organization or group. That has been the case and that is the case.
Mr. Lang: Is that the same principal that applies, for example, in the proposed Municipal Engineering Capital Projects in 1988-89 when the water and sewer contract for $275,000 is initiated, if it is done by the Indian band, then is it the position of the government that they will not be required to tender the various works out, for example the rental of equipments that this type of thing? It will be totally up to the Indian band to decide how that money will be administered?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: If they can prove that they have the administrative capability of undertaking the project in total, and through discussions with the Community Services Branch they can prove that the project is going to be undertaken in basically a sound manner, then the responsibility for the project is transferred through the capital agreement as per long time policy, and transferred to the community organization or band.
Mr. Lang: I just want to get this clear in my mind, then. There will be no requirements in such a transfer if they can prove to whomever, in however a manner they do it, that they have the administrative capabilities, and that there will be no requirement to tender the work out, as far as the equipment rentals and that type of thing is concerned?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: If the Member wants more details on this I can certainly bring back the exact process by which a project like this is managed with the Department of Community Services. It has to be the Department of Community Services because the capital assistance program provides for capital projects to be undertaken or managed by community groups. So, I will undertake to provide what might be a typical arrangement for a band or a community group in the construction of a particular project.
Mr. Lang: In the proposed scheduled work that is supposed to be done - the Pelly Crossing fire hall construction, $330,000 - it states that construction may be undertaken by the community. Are we talking then in that particular case of a community organization within Pelly Crossing, or we talking about the Indian band?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: In that case it would likely be the Indian band. I am not familiar with another community group with the administrative competence to undertake a project like that.
Mr. Lang: I think that the government had better take a hard look in respect to what they are doing in this area. I do not have a problem, quite frankly, if we are talking about some renovations to a hall or things like this, but when we are talking about the magnitude of $300,000 to $500,000, and getting in to some work that is very technical, like water and sewer - and believe me, I know of what I speak, both practically and politically, that water and sewer are not necessarily the best type of projects to be involved in, either from a construction point of view or sometimes from the governments point of view, depending upon the outcome - I feel very strongly that the government had better have a re-evaluation of where they are going and how they are going to redirect YTG capital dollars, as far as the centre of responsibility is concerned.
I want to put the Minister on notice that if it develops, in projects of this kind and of this magnitude, where major, major problems develop - which I hope they do not, but if they develop - and the cries start to come to us on this side of the House, where there appears to be favoritism, as far as smaller contract, sub-contracts being let, and the perception of fairness is no longer there, I want to go on the record that the Minister better not stand up in this House and start blaming somebody else because of the problem.
The problem starts here and the Minister has been given notice and he is being served notice that if it occurs, he is going to have to bear the responsibility. He cannot start passing it off to the Housing Corporation or some board or committee, because the responsibility lies in this Legislature, not only to expend the dollars and ensure that they are expended wisely, but also to raise the dollars. When you start divesting yourself of that responsibility for short term political gain, you really have to question the commitment to the political process.
I want to get on to another issue that has not been touched on. It is specific to some degree but, also in general context, affects the Yukon and has to do with airports. I notice there is nothing with respect to the Dawson City airport and what is going to happen as far as the construction of a new airport site? Could the Minister enlighten all Members in the House with respect to this particular project?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I can assure you that you, Mr. Chairman, are very aware of the situation that exists with the relocation of the Dawson City airport. The Airports Branch of the Department of Community and Transportation Services, along with Ministry of Transport officials and the senior levels of my department have, for some time, along with community interests, primarily the mayor of Dawson, discussed the potential for relocation of the Dawson City airport. There have been some concerns expressed that certain kinds of air traffic would not be licensed by MOT because of the airports location, and that another location should be found so the airport could be licensed and could possibly be used for jet traffic.
The government agreed, in principle, that it should be thoroughly investigated and quickly, and have been discussing with the MOT various sites in the Dawson area. As Mr. Chairman knows, more than anyone else, this is not an easy process, especially in the Dawson area. Practically everything is either staked or claimed in one way or another, and to find a suitable site that is accessible to the town that does not involve horrific land acquisitions costs was a difficult task. The community interests and the government interests got together to select a site, and finally narrowed it down to one they thought was the best site. They agreed amongst themselves that that would be a suitable site, and the request was made immediately to the federal Minister to stop all staking on the site.
The fact of life in the Ministers life is that, despite his best wishes, even if he were to take it through and hand deliver it desk to desk in Ottawa, it would still take him months to get the approvals through to stop staking. So, there was an agreement that the site location would not be released until the ban on staking had been approved.
The federal Minister has indicated a number of times that he is trying to move this through the system as fast as he humanly can and that we will just have to be patient. So, we cannot make the site publicly known until such time as the ban on staking has gone through the channels and been approved.
That is basically where we stand. With respect to the funding of the construction, formally the federal Ministry of Transport has indicated that they have nothing in their budget that could count as funding for this particular airport, which is projected to be in the neighbourhood of $15 million. That has not dashed peoples hopes or expectations, because there is still a feeling that it is inherently a good project, and there will be attempts made to seek funding approvals from various government agencies in Ottawa for the airport relocation.
In the Arctic B and C negotiations, the issue has been brought up and, because government is interested in seeing the airport relocated and upgraded, the discussion of funding this particular airport has been held in abeyance - or held out of negotiations until we get some clear indication from the federal government of what they are prepared to fund in order to relocate and upgrade the airport. Basically, that is a snapshot of where things stand.
Mr. Lang: When does he expect the Minister to humanly deliver this ban on staking? When does he expect a definitive decision by the government that this site is no longer accessible for the purpose of staking claims, and any purpose other than for what the Minister has outlined?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The Minister I was speaking of in terms of actually hand delivering it from desk to desk was the federal minister, not me. The feeling was that it would take three months to process the ban on staking, so it would be three months from the date that the decision was made to choose the optimum site.
Mr. Lang: We keep talking about prices and who is going to pay for it. What is the projected cost of this particular project? I know you cannot be definitive, but you must have a number that is being considered as far as the relocation and all the costs that are accrued to it.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: As I indicated a few moments ago, the figure of $15 million has been bandied about as a ball park figure to bring the airport up to standards to accommodate jet traffic.
Mr. Lang: On the question of fire halls and fire trucks, am I correct that Canyon Creek is getting a fire truck?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I do not believe so. I believe that Canyon Creek will be getting firefighting equipment and, like some small communities, will be offered a tank and pump. As it exists in Burwash, they can put the tank and pump on the back of the truck and provide firefighting capability that way.
Mr. Lang: Is it the policy that, if any place in the territory decides that they want to have firefighting equipment, they just apply and, if they are prepared to provide some sweat equity, they are eligible to have a fire truck and a fire hall?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: No. I presume that there has to be some population to protect. There have been areas outside that are classically referred to as unincorporated communities that have gone to great lengths to try and provide firefighting protection for themselves. Sometimes this is done through sweat equity and through their own initiatives, such as the Carcross Cutoff project.
Sometimes it might be done on a much reduced scale in terms of the provision of firefighting equipment, which falls short of actual trucks but might incorporate certain kinds of equipment. The residents in the Judas Creek area are interested in fire caches in strategic locations as a rudimentary form of firefighting protection. In Upper Liard, there has been a longstanding desire for formal fire protection by a number of residents. Canyon Creek is growing, and they have requested firefighting equipment.
It is not always a fire truck. Quite often, it might be an old water truck with a pump, or it might be a tank with a pump that could be loaded on the back of a flatbed. There are a variety of means of affording protection, but sometimes it does depend on the role of the community to get things rolling.
The Member may be aware of the controversy over providing fire protection on the Takhini Hot Springs Road. There has been some discussion in the past on the provision of a fire hall in that area and, certainly, the population in the area would seem to justify a fire hall being constructed. If the residents are not interested in supporting this, either through a volunteer fire department or other means, then the government has to pull in its horns.
Some communities put a higher priority on fire protection more than anything else. If there is a demonstrated need, the government will respond.
Mr. Lang: Of the two other areas I would like to touch on, one has to do with the federal government and the question of financing for projects undertaken by the Government of Yukon. I notice there are a number of road jobs that are tentatively scheduled, depending on federal financing being made available.
When does the government expect approval from Treasury Board for these particular projects? Is there a time schedule that the government is looking at, or when is the government expecting a response?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: One never knows. We generally receive final approvals in the March/April period. That is generally when the issues are brought up in the Legislature. We wait day by day with baited breath for the final approvals to come through so the tendering can take place. Much of the design work is already done over the winter time. There have been times in the past year, for example where, because of the unique funding arrangement that DIAND has with funding northern roads - and because it is shared between the NWT and the Yukon - if the NWT does not take it and the money is made available, then they will be offered to the Yukon before being turned back to the general pot. We have taken advantage this year, of some funding in order to undertake work under the Engineering Services Agreement that was approved quite late in the season - late July or early August.
Generally, the final approvals are in the March/April period, and it depends on the work load in Ottawa as to when they come through. We always push them for the definitive answer so we can get the work under way. We do get tentative indications on which to base this Budget well in advance of that. That is often eight or ten months in advance of the administrative level. The Budget here is formed in large part in September/October of the year, and we get the preliminary indications from DIAND officials of what we might be able to expect and, historically, base our Budget on those tentative suggestions as to what might be available according to their understanding of what the budgeting process will mean.
Final approval is in the spring.
Mr. Lang: On the question of the firewood road maintenance. The Minister and I had a brief exchange with respect to the question of firewood Capital upgrading. On the Operation and Maintenance side, I think all sides agree that in these areas that are required for wood cutting, there is a need to have at least a minimal amount of maintenance done for the accessibility, in and out.
I would like to preface my remarks. I am not talking about a highway. I am talking about a road that is passable in most weather, where a four wheel drive or a one-ton truck can get in without having major mechanical problems because the road is too rough.
Is it the Ministers intention to designate the main forestry roads as roads under the highways regulations, to be maintained at a very minimal basis, so we are not in a situation where somebody like myself is phoned up after someone has either gone off the road or had an accident or a major mechanical failure, because the road has not seen any maintenance? Is it his intention to designate these roads under the highways regulations similar to other roads, and set up another category so minimal maintenance is done and they are checked on once a year to ensure that they are passable?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: There is a maintenance policy, Policy 4-9, which has various classes of maintenance incorporated into it. It covers off roads, not by group, such as firewood access road, but by name of the road, and accords those roads as having certain kinds of maintenance activity for them. It covers everything from highways to once a year recreation roads. With respect to wood lot access roads we will designate the roads by name in the maintenance schedule, and I think the Member and I are referring to the same roads, although I would be cautious by saying we will not designate all wood lot access roads. We would have to determine what roads are important for community use in the various communities. I would agree in general principle that the minimal maintenance of wood lot access roads is something that the government should begin to undertake a little more seriously. We have shown some good faith in that in the Whitehorse area this particular year. I am hoping that on the Operation and Maintenance side and on the Capital side, through the Roads to Resources Program and other means, that we provide better access to wood lots for the communities.
Mr. Lang: I appreciate the comments from the Minister. I want to make it clear that I see the problem the Minister will be faced with on which roads. I want to make it very clear that this side supports the principle for the main access road into these areas. Spurs going off the main road are basically the responsibility of the commercial or private wood cutters in the area. I want it clear: we can expect that there will be a designation under the policy by the time we sit next spring. Is that correct? I would like a commitment that this will be done prior to the spring sitting. I am talking two or three months from now so something is in effect.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: On the O&M side, the ongoing responsibility we have to assume, as a result of this decision, will have to be incorporated in the new policy and ultimately into the budget. Of course, in a given year, they may not be seen in the budget, but nevertheless they will have to be seen in the budget at one point or another.
Mr. Lang: I want to reiterate for all Members on that side, especially the front bench, that there is support from this side and if they are having trouble finding money when the Minister brings it forward, which is going to require some dollars - not a lot, but some dollars - no doubt I can probably contribute to that, looking at some of the projects that have been presented to us and from which perhaps monies can be transferred out.
I would like to move on to another question; it is a question we put at the beginning of the Mains and that is the question of the O&M costs. I am not talking about the Ross River arena specifically, unless the Minister really wants to get into it again, but I want to ask the Minister: is he in a position to table in this House the projected O&M costs that are going to be incurred by these particular projects after completion, and what the taxpayer will be expected to pay?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I will provide that information for Members, whatever information I have that they request on particular projects, with respect to what is projected to be the O&M cost associated with the project, either increases or reductions.
Mr. Lang: Does he have a schedule of those costs with him at the present time?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: It is interspersed in my book. On request, I will try to provide the information.
Mr. Lang: I am making the formal request for this side of the House that on each project we come across could the Minister, in his opening remarks, as opposed to us taking up time with Hansard and staff and everybody else having to get up and ask the same questions, incorporate it into his comments as we go through the various projects, indicating what the costs are and how they are going to be paid and by whom?
Mr. Lang: I have some questions here. I would like to know how the government came to the decision that there has to be another warehouse built in Whitehorse and, also, for example, another garage built in Ross River? How did the government come to that decision?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: Firstly, the construction in Whitehorse is not warehouse construction, it is modifications to the central workshop to provide for better ventilation and better operating efficiency. There are now two doors that service the entire workshop and, in order to get into the workshop and to provide maintenance on the vehicles, the door at the end of the shop has to be opened when trucks drive into the shop. When the air quality gets too bad all the people disappear into the coffee room - as they should, they do not have to breathe that stuff - and the shop cools off. So the initiative here is to provide for doors for the bays in which the work is to be done so that if a truck has to be moved from the warehouse, it can be done through the door that is dedicated to that bay, and to provide for better ventilation for the shop itself. That is the intent of the expenditure.
Mr. Lang: Perhaps you can go a little further with the Ross River garage.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I do not know when the Member last saw the Ross River garage but I think that perhaps just a snapshot of the garage will indicate to the Member that there is a considerable problem there. The garage is not fuel efficient. It is too small. It is in very poor condition and it is the top priority of all the facilities around the territory; it is the top priority for garage space.
Mr. Lang: I would like the Minister to perhaps outline to us, now that we have had a year of experience with the increased gross vehicle weights for the Yukon Alaska transport on our highways, what effect this has had in respect to the projections by the Department, in respect to operation and maintenance costs and perhaps further capital costs, as far as reconstruction of the highway between Faro and the Alaskan border to Skagway?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The experience that we have had is primarily this that the section of highway that waschip sealed for dust control, between Carmacks pavement and Fox Lake, has suffered considerably, as was to be expected. The chipseal was put down, not on a typical base, but was put down on the old road, and it was expected to break up. There are operation and maintenance costs associated with that that we are trying to address in the Capital Plan, here.
The road just north of Fox Lake and along Fox Lake is suffering considerably, not so much because of ore traffic but because of the underground streams underneath the road, which really caused the road to start experiencing severe trouble, almost from the day that construction was finished.
There are Operation and Maintenance costs associated with that. We are attempting, in this budget and in future years, to upgrade this road to a standard where the Operation and Maintenance costs are reduced and also to a standard that will prove more trouble-free than it is now. It is not a good road, it is a bad road. Efforts have to be made to ensure that the road is upgraded to a standard that will take any traffic, let alone heavy truck traffic.
The section of the road between Whitehorse and Carcross has held up fairly well. There is one section that experienced some subgrade problems and has broken up. Under the Engineering Services Agreement, we are going to try and repair that section of road this coming year.
The government has, through the Engineering Services Agreement, began to upgrade the Carcross to the border section of the road, to a standard similar to the section between Carcross and the Carcross Cutoff. We have experienced some difficulty with the chipseal on this area of the road. That was to be expected since the chipseal was laid for dust control purposes, and was not laid on the proper sub-base. As a policy in the earlier days, it made sense to provide dust control chipseal, and it still does depending upon the kind of traffic that is anticipated. The road has been used by a lot of industrial traffic, and, as we thought, there has been considerable difficulty with the road and the BST, although it has held up better than we thought it would. We are trying to bring the road up to a standard that will be easier and less costly to maintain.
We did a number of things to try and prevent flying rocks on the Faro to Carmacks section. In this budget, we have undertaken to initiate total reconstruction of the highway between Carmacks and Ross River. That is the next priority after the Klondike Highway. This year will see pretty well the finishing off of that long-awaited project. There will be some clean up work to be done, some BST application and overlays, and that sort of thing. Apart from the construction sites on the Klondike Highway, we will see BST between Whitehorse and Dawson. Everyone who participated over the years in making those funding decisions and dedicating resources for this project ought to justifiably proud for that considerable engineering feat.
Now that the project is being scaled down as it is being completed, sites will be now set on the Campbell Highway and we will be upgrading the highway between Carmacks and Ross River.
Mr. Lang: I appreciate the dissertation, but I asked what the projected costs for the upgrading were, to meet the very real problem of being experienced on the roadbed - in part due to the increase of gross vehicle weights in conjunction with Yukon Alaska Transport. I would like to know an estimate of the Department for the projected costs of what this is going to cost between Faro and the border at Fraser.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: These are ball park figures. With respect to the total reconstruction of the road between Carcross and the border, it is projected to be approximately $28 million. With respect to the reconstruction of the road between Whitehorse or Fox Lake and the pavement, I believe we are looking at approximately $8 or $9 million over the long term. I would hesitate to call the reconstruction of the road between Faro and Carmacks as being a result of the ore haul, because certainly the trucks can continue to travel on gravel roads. In the long term interests of the territory, and ultimately for the driving ease of the public - and to ultimately draw down Operation and Maintenance costs - we have undertaken to do that, and that is presently being costed. I am not sure what the costs of bringing that up to pavement standard would be, but they have been projected in the ball park of $20 million between Carmacks and Ross River.
Mr. McLachlan: I have one small supplemental. The Minister mentioned every portion of the concentrate haul except Whitehorse to Carcross. He mentioned Carcross to the border. Is there funding for that portion as well? If so how much?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: There was remedial work mentioned in my opening remarks, but basically that project was undertaken and completed prior to any decision with respect to the ore haul. It was simply completed as a tourism corridor more than anything else. I cannot recall what the total figures for that particular stretch of road were, but if the Member is interested I can get that information.
Mr. Lang: I appreciate the Ministers openness as far as projected costs are concerned. It is fairly substantial.
On the question of transportation costs, the bulk transport tax or surcharge that was put into place with respect to the Curragh/Government of Yukon agreement, is that bringing in about the same amount of money, which was $325,000, or are we going to be in a situation where we will see more money coming through that avenue, as far as taxation is concerned?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The initial figure of $300,000 - one dollar for one ton - was for the start-up year. I believe, although I do not have the figures with me, that increased substantially because of substantial tonnage increases. In the O&M Mains, our projections for next year will be apparent, and we will be seeking information specifically from Curragh as to what they plan to haul so that we will be able to put the appropriate recovery in the Budget.
Mr. Lang: Is it still the position of the government that a sanding truck should not be put at Fraser, in view of the experience they have had over the past year?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: The position that I have taken with respect to this is that I reiterated to the Department that, when the Skagway Road is icy or slick, it should be sanded. They indicated to me that they have responded quickly to icy conditions, which primarily happen in the border seasons -fall and spring - when there is moderately warm weather. They also indicated that it would be difficult to store sand at Fraser - even for top-ups for the trucks from Carcross - because, due to heavy snowfalls, the sand is mixed with snow and is not appropriate for sanding. As it stands right now, there are two trucks in Carcross and they will sand the road if it is icy.
Mr. Lang: I want to register again a complaint that is coming my way. The question of the sanding truck is very much of a concern to many of the truckers, especially when the changing weather takes place so quickly in that area. The observation is made that, on the Alaskan side, you can tell at certain times when the weather changes what portion of the road you are on because of the maintenance on the Alaskan side with providing sanding. It is an observation made by guys who are actually making a living trucking on the highway and, in many cases, risking their lives.
It would seem to me that, if the government is not prepared to provide that kind of accommodation, I still do not fully comprehend why the government is resistant to it. I do not understand why we do not go into an agreement with Alaska and see why they cannot pick up those extra few miles coming over Fraser and the pass when they do sand up to the border. Has that ever been discussed and, if so, how far did it get as far as some cost sharing to meet that aspect, if it is required?
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I can assure the Members, and can assure whoever reads Hansard in the future, that I am not being bullheaded over this and have gone to great lengths to discuss the matter with the Department of Highways. I have been known to take comments from Members with respect to particular issues into consideration and change my mind and the Departments mind as a result of those discussions. There is respect for Members wishes. In this particular case, I have been convinced that the Department can sand the road with the trucks from Carcross, that they have to have the sand stockpiled in Carcross because of the snow falls, and that they can and will sand the road when it does get icy. They have indicated that they can operationally do that from Carcross. I have been satisfied that that can be done.
With respect to the specific question about the use of Alaskan trucks on the Canadian side, there have been concerns expressed by Customs on both sides of the border about Americans up here doing work on the Canadian side and, if Members will recall, that is what effectively shut down Canadian workers doing the work on the American side under what we thought might be an agreement.
In any case, to my knowledge, the use of American sanding trucks has not been discussed with the State of Alaska. At this point, we have not discussed with them joint maintenance. That was considered a matter of case closed after the considerable discussions that took place at the time the deal was negotiated. Members will note that, on the American side, practically all of the American side is hill, and it is very sensible and appropriate to sand the American side at all times. The snow falls are extremely heavy in the pass, and I have been told that the sanding trucks can pass down the road and the road will be covered with snow by the time they return in only a matter of minutes later. This makes the use of the sand negligible in terms of providing traction.
There are a number of operational difficulties with the sanding, but they know that when the road is icy they should sand the road. They have indicated to me that they are abiding with that.
Mr. Phillips: Maybe I can make a recommendation to the Minister that he meet with American officials and ask them how they manage to keep their road well sanded. I came over the road twice in the last month. Both times the American side of the road was very well sanded. It was snowing, and the trucks were sanding the road. The minute we hit the Canadian-American border and travelled to Carcross, there was very little sand at all. That is the section where there are two or three lakes that are open all winter, and the roads are very icy because of that. I can tell the Minister from hands on experience that that part of the road is the iciest section. The Member for Porter Creek East has a valid concern. There is no doubt that there will be some accidents on that section of the road.
The Americans can manage to sand their road when it is snowing, and it works. You can obviously see that there is sand on the road when you climb the hill. The Minister, however, is telling us that his officials tell him that it cannot be sanded. Will the Minister give us that assurance that the government will find out how the Americans do it, so that we can do it properly.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I have more respect for highway maintenance personnel than the Member gives them credit for. I have indicated to highway maintenance that when the road is slippery that they ensure that the road is sanded. I will reiterate it once again. They know the direction that they must take. If the Member has experienced some slippery roads, he can write down the details and transmit them to the department. It is the governments policy that the road be sanded when it is slippery.
I do travel on the Klondike Highway class roads every weekend, and there are times when they are slippery. There is a lot of road to be covered, but it cannot all be sanded all of the time. That is a fact of life in rural Yukon because there are costs associated with providing sand 100 percent of the time on all of the roads. It is the governments intention to ensure that the roads are as safe as possible. During slippery conditions, people must drive accordingly. Sand trucks cannot be out there all of the time. This cannot be done. The government, recognizing the importance of this, will do what it can to ensure that the sanding does take place. If the Member has experienced slippery conditions, I will discuss it with the department and see that the conditions are rectified if that is appropriate.
Hon. Mr. McDonald: I move that you report progress on Bill No. 5.
Motion agreed to
Hon. Mr. Porter: I move that the Speaker do now resume the Chair.
Motion agreed to
Speaker resumes Chair
Speaker: I will now call the House to order. May the House have the report from the Chairman of Committee of the Whole?
Mr. Webster: Committee of the Whole has considered Bill No. 5, entitled First Appropriation Act, 1988-89, and directed me to report progress on same.
Speaker: You have heard the report from the Chairman of Committee of the Whole. Are you agreed?
Some Hon. Members: Agreed.
Speaker: I declare the report carried.
Hon. Mr. Porter: I move the House do now adjourn.
Speaker: It has been moved by the hon. Government House Leader that the House do now adjourn.
Motion agreed to
Speaker: This House now stands adjourned until 1:30 p.m. tomorrow.
The House adjourned at 5:29 p.m.
The following Sessional Papers were tabled on December 15, 1987:
Business Development Advisory Board Annual Report, 1986-87 (Penikett)