The House met at 10 a.m.
Mr. Speaker: Statements by the ministry. The hon. Minister of Agriculture and Food.
Mr. Nixon: Is the long-awaited statement that it is better or worse than BC?
Hon. B. Stephenson: Much better.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Mr. Eaton: The producers feed through the trough out there.
Hon. W. Newman: I wish to inform the House of the final payment which will be made to those producers who voluntarily enrolled in the Ontario beef calf income stabilization programme. In the first year over 12,100 Ontario cow-calf producers joined the five-year programme, enrolling some 312,850 beef cows.
In 1975, the guarantee price was established at 50 cents per pound. In effect, this meant that when the weighted average market price of beef stocker calves fell below the 50-cent guarantee price, a payment from the programme would be made to absorb the difference. The weighted average market price of Ontario stocker calves during the monitoring period of September, October, and November in key sales areas throughout the province was 29.82 cents per pound.
Under the beef calf programme, the gross payment per cow to the farmer amounts to $77.19 this year. Since the premium this year for the programme was $5 per cow, this amount must be deducted from the gross payment per cow of $72.19. It’s of interest to note that the average herd size in the programme was 26 cows so that the average net payment per producer with this size of herd will amount to $1,877. For the cow-calf industry in total, this will mean a net transfer of about $22.5 million in 1975.
Noting the average herd size and the substantial transfer payment, it suggests two things: First, the vast majority of serious cow-calf producers expressed faith in the programme by enrolling and, secondly, the financial aid will assure the continued viability of this important segment of the beef industry in Ontario.
Cow-calf producers who enrolled in the Ontario beef calf income stabilization programme can anticipate receipt of their cheques from this programme in December of this year.
For those members of the House who are not completely familiar with the details of the formula used to determine the final payment, it was based on an average weaning rate of 85 per cent and an average calf weight of 450 lb. All calves, including those sold singly or in pairs at the monitored sales yards in eastern Ontario were used in determining the weighted average market price for Ontario.
A 10 per cent random sample of programme applicants was visited during November and early December by Ministry of Agriculture and Food staff to ensure that the correct number of eligible cows was enrolled. The ministry staff received excellent cooperation from producers and it is a tribute to beef producers that only minor errors in reporting cow numbers occurred. These were due to the fact that this was the first year of a new programme.
I should point out that any farmer who produced high-quality calves would have received more from the marketplace than this year’s provincial average. In our continuing efforts to improve the quality of our Ontario beef herd, it suggests that the producer who does an excellent job of producing calves receives a double benefit both from the marketplace and the beef calf programme.
The Ontario beef calf income stabilization programme’s original concept and purpose was to help producers during bottoms in the market; this has been achieved. Under the Ontario programme, as the price in the marketplace is depressed, the benefits to the producer in the form of transfer payments are increased accordingly. We have calculated that every drop of one cent a pound in the marketplace means roughly $1 million will be made available to Ontario’s cow-calf producers.
To my way of thinking, this is when the producer needs the greatest help -- when the marketplace does not provide the necessary returns. This programme has achieved this for the benefit of our Ontario beef caff producers.
ONTARIO HOCKEY COUNCIL
Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, the members of the Ontario Hockey Council are meeting in Toronto this weekend and I would like to take this particular occasion this morning to welcome the chairman, Mr. Lloyd Davidson, and several members of that council to the House this morning.
Today, the council is also releasing a new booklet for parents called “You and Your Child in Hockey,” and copies are now at the desks of all members of the Legislature. The council intends eventually to distribute this hook to parents of all children involved in minor hockey in the province.
As members of the House will recall, the council was established by the government last year following publication of the McMurtry report on violence in amateur hockey. The council is made of presidents and vice-presidents of the Ontario Hockey Association, the Ontario Minor Hockey Association, the Metropolitan Toronto Hockey League, the Northern Ontario Hockey Association, the Thunder Bay Amateur Hockey Association, the Ottawa District Amateur Hockey Association, the Ottawa District Minor Hockey Association, and two representatives of the sports and fitness division in my ministry.
Already the council has initiated rule changes through its member associations and the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association which are aimed at reducing violence in amateur hockey. At the same time the council has encouraged the expansion of the coaching programme in Ontario and has recommended that both coaches and referees in all leagues take these courses for their certificates.
For most young hockey players, however the parents have the greatest influence and this handbook is intended to show them how they can best contribute to the development of their children as players. While the council is arranging for the distribution of the handbook through their leagues, I would be happy to provide extra copies for any members of the House to distribute to their constituents. Along with the handbook for parents, the council is preparing a movie which can be used by schools, clubs and other organizations to encourage good hockey players, and sportsmanship and championship quality play.
I know that the members of the House appreciate the work of the council and all that they are doing to make our national sport a healthy, a safer and a more enjoyable activity for everyone, and I want to thank them on behalf of the Legislature and I would ask the members of the Legislature to welcome the chairman and the members of the Ontario Hockey Council here today.
Mr. McClellan: Mr. Speaker, may I ask you to welcome 70 grade seven and eight students from Givins Senior Public School who are here with their teacher, Mr. Jarvis, in the east gallery. Thank you.
Mr. Speaker: Oral questions. The hon. Leader of the Opposition.
Mr. Lewis: I have no questions for the provincial Treasurer this morning.
Mr. Ruston: He will answer you anyway.
Mr. Speaker: Order.
Mr. Lewis: Now that another government has bit the dust, we’ll get on to this one.
Mr. Breithaupt: There is a meeting of the Social Credit League at 1 o’clock.
Mr. Lewis: That’s quite a popular vote you got in British Columbia yesterday.
Mr. Speaker: Now for the question period.
Mr. Lewis: I should never have got out of bed yesterday.
Mr. Lewis: May I ask the Minister of Labour, can she make a report to the Legislature on the present status of the pulp and paper strike and what hope she has from the meetings I believe she had earlier this week?
Hon. B. Stephenson: As the members of this House know, we did have a meeting arranged by me between the executive officers of the union and a representative group of presidents of the paper companies. It was a useful and I think productive meeting, so productive that in fact they decided mutually it would be well to continue the discussion, and we begin again tomorrow morning at 10 o’clock.
INCREASE IN HOUSING BUDGET
Mr. Lewis: A question, if I may, of the Minister of Housing: Can the Minister of Housing indicate what the 2.2 per cent additional growth for the housing portion of the budget indicated by the provincial Treasurer yesterday for 1976-1977, will mean in terms of numbers of starts next year or in terms of any projected targets?
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: No, I don’t think I can give any projection on that singular figure. It’s going to be part of the total programme and we certainly can’t give any projection as to the number of starts. I think I’ve said to the hon. member before that Ii don’t believe in putting numbers out and then sweating, if it doesn’t look like I’m going to make it.
Mr. Lewis: Fair enough. By way of supplementary, since the 2.2 per cent obviously won’t maintain any inflationary rate, and the housing sector being more inflationary than most, how did the minister arrive at the figure, since the consequence of it will be surely to decrease yet again the number of units in 1976-77? How did he come to the conclusion?
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: Mr. Speaker, I didn’t arrive at the figure.
Mr. Deans: Well, who did?
Mr. Lewis: Does the minister mean the Ministry of Housing is not consulted in the process of establishing a rate of increase which will prejudice the number of housing starts in the province next year?
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: Yes, there’s consultation going on but the decision, as to how the figures are going to be arrived at, is one that the Treasurer has as his responsibility and we try to live within those guidelines.
Mr. Lewis: Without any knowledge of what it means.
Mr. MacDonald: Like Hydro you just take orders from the Treasurer.
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: It is early in the game yet.
HIGHWAY 400 EXTENSION
Mr. Lewis: I would ask a question, if I may, of the Minister of Transportation and Communications. Could he indicate whether he has any rough projections at all, even based on a cost per mile, of what the arterial extension of Highway 400 might mean in dollar terms?
Hon. Mr. Snow: I don’t have that figure right here but I am sure we can get a projection for the hon. member.
Mr. Lewis: Will he make a report to the House to indicate what the likely cost figures of this project, to which he has committed himself in advance, will be, and can he show how that fits in with his restraint priorities in the process? Is it possible to present that to the House?
Hon. Mr. Snow: I can certainly get a rough estimate. It would be impossible to get a detailed estimate until the design work is completed or until the alignment is decided upon, from Eglinton to St. Clair, but I am sure my staff can give me some rough figures or ball park figures, as I believe the hon. member referred to them yesterday. I have not had an opportunity to get them since yesterday.
What was the other part of the question?
Mr. Lewis: I just wanted to know how that fits in with the restraints. I am sure the minister will report on it.
Hon. Mr. Snow: As I think I stated yesterday, we work on our construction programme and our budget one year at a time basically. I don’t anticipate that any construction work will take place on the 400 extension in the 1976-1977 year. It would at least he very late in the year, if it were to take place, because there has been no design work completed yet, even on the section to Eglinton. We will be proceeding with the design work on that section and carrying on with the impact studies and consultations on the section south of Eglinton. I don’t expect any cash flow problems in 1976-1977, and then we will look at it and fit it into our programme in the years beyond that.
OTTAWA CORONER’S INQUEST
Mr. Lewis: Continuing to ask questions only of generous and friendly Tories this morning, I want to ask the Solicitor General has he read and is he prepared to make a report to the House on the inquest recommendations that flowed from the shooting in the school in Ottawa?
Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I have a copy of that on my desk. I haven’t completed the reading of it but I have glanced over it summarily. We will be making recommendations and I hope that some of these recommendations that are in that report will be taken up when the federal government comes forward with its gun controls. There are other recommendations and I am not yet certain what we are prepared to do about them, but we will be making recommendations.
Mr. Lewis: Can the minister make a statement in the House on that particular inquest and its recommendations, dealing one by one with those he intends to act on, so there is some coherence to it?
Hon. Mr. MacBeth: I certainly can do that, though I don’t know how soon and I would assume the member would like something before this House adjourns. I will try it but I am rather hesitant. Certainly the cabinet will not have any ideas arising out of that before then. I can make some personal comments if the member would wish it.
TORONTO TEACHERS’ NEGOTIATIONS
Mr. Nixon: I have a question for the Minister of Education. Is the minister still unwilling or unable to give a report on the negotiations which have now been taking place in the Royal York for a full week with the special mediators concerned with the continuing strike, now a month old, of the Metro secondary school teachers?
Hon. Mr. Wells: My report to this House is that the negotiations are continuing at the Royal York Hotel, the mediators are present, everyone is working very diligently, and I believe, as everyone in this House believes and hopes, they are working toward achieving a settlement. That is the only report I can give.
Mr. Nixon: I would agree that we hope they are achieving a settlement. Can he comment in any way on the statements that have been made by the mediator that they are expecting the situation to gel, that they have now exchanged specific alternative programmes different to the ones they were discussing before? Is that the kind of progress that is being made or can the minister report to the House that it just seems to be an increase in pressure coming from both sides?
Hon. Mr. Wells: Mr. Speaker, if that is what the mediators say about the situation, I would have to believe that’s what’s happening down there.
Mr. Speaker: Are there any further questions?
Mr. Nixon: A further supplementary: The eminent Minister of Education has nothing further to say about the situation?
Mr. Singer: Or the eminent mediators?
Hon. Mr. Wells: Mr. Speaker, I think I’ve given the House a very complete report on what’s happening.
Mr. Nixon: I would like to direct a question to the Minister of Housing. Does he agree with newspaper reports that indicate the attitude of Toronto planners and members of Toronto council is that the so-called Metro Centre programme is dead and that there is not any viable program e that would allow it to go forward? If he is aware of those views, has he got any programme to resuscitate it since it would involve a substantial amount of low-rental housing in the heart of the city of Toronto?
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: Mr. Speaker, I have no programme to revitalize it. I think I probably would have to agree that the Metro Centre concept as it was originally presented is dead, destroyed and assassinated quite effectively by Toronto city council itself. I would suggest that we can look at the possible uses of that area -- and certainly they may well involve housing -- but as far as the Metro Centre original concept, may it rest in peace.
Mr. Nixon: A supplementary: Since a great deal of the land is owned or controlled by either the federal or provincial governments and since the concern, not only of Metro council but of the whole community, is for some imaginative procedure and facility for putting low-rental housing and other facilities on that land, isn’t this an area where provincial initiative might once again be brought into play in co-operation with Metro council -- perhaps even parallel to it?
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: Mr. Speaker, I believe the hon. member knows full well that, after the obvious demise of the Metro Centre proposal, there was a very well-attended meeting of representative governments as well as the two railroads that were involved and in particular the company that was interested in the Metro Centre development. The meeting was held here in Toronto, and at that time it was generally felt that the transportation aspect of the matter should be looked at in more detail.
We have said in the past, both the Minister of Housing and the Minister of Transportation and Communications, that we were interested in being involved, but with Metro council, Toronto city council and the federal government being involved as well. We have not moved, I don’t think, in any direction that would revitalize a project similar to Metro Centre. We have been looking at it from a transportation centre point of view, as the member for St. George (Mrs. Campbell) has mentioned on several occasions.
Mr. Givens: A supplementary: Isn’t it a fact -- and the minister, as the former Minister of Transportation and Communications would know -- that if we moved the railway corridor to the south it would give us 168 acres of land that we could build on and if we keep it where it is it will only give us about 17 acres to build on? If that is so, why doesn’t the minister proceed to revitalize it on that basis? Surely we shouldn’t miss that golden opportunity --
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is right, and he well knows that the removal and relocation of those tracks would fall within the federal government’s Railway Relocation and Crossing Act but, quite frankly, we have clearly said to them that we are not overly enthused about the way that Act was to be applied.
Mr. Nixon: You said that quite clearly, did you?
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: There are a number of costs that would be involved there for both the municipality, the province and the federal government, but the relocation of those tracks was one of the matters discussed extensively back when Metro Centre was breathing a little. It was not looked upon with a great deal of favour because of the tremendous cost involved and without having proper clarification as to how the Railway Relocation and Crossing Act would apply to this effect.
Mr. Sargent: Why don’t you make a call to Ottawa now?
Mr. Givens: A supplementary.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. This is degenerating into a debate again.
Mr. Givens: It is very important, Mr. Speaker. It’s extremely urgent.
Mr. Speaker: Supplementary questions only, please.
Mr. Givens: Since the minister has so much to gain from this site, wouldn’t it be proper for him to call the federal Minister of State for Urban Affairs and suggest a proper cost-sharing plan to revitalize this thing?
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. This is not a supplementary question.
Mr. Givens: It is.
Mr. Speaker: It is not a supplementary question.
Mr. Givens: From this side it looks like it.
Mr. Speaker: Order. Does the hon. member wish to ask a supplementary question which is one seeking information? If not, I believe the member for St. George wants to ask a supplementary question, which I will allow. And this will be the final one on this subject. Thank you.
Mrs. Campbell: Mr. Speaker, to the Minister of Housing: From his replies, is it not clearly indicated that the failure was not that of Toronto city council but the lack of a catalyst? Is it not possible for him, together with the Minister of Transportation and Communications (Mr. Snow), to become that kind of catalyst to restore the housing portion of that programme?
Mr. Speaker: Before the minister answers, I might point out that the purpose of the question period is not to carry on a debate, or send suggestions back and forth; this is not the proper place for that. It’s a time to seek information --
Mr. Sargent: Not to embarrass the government.
Mr. Speaker: -- and to give information, but not to debate the issue and offer alternative suggestions and what have you. Does the hon. minister wish to make a brief reply to that suggestion? And then we will move on.
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: Mr. Speaker, I don’t believe that it is necessary for the province solely to take on the responsibility of being the catalyst.
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: If the member is talking about the relocation of those tracks, as the member for Armourdale (Mr. Givens) has suggested, then in fact it is a matter to be discussed with the federal minister. And I would draw to the hon. member’s attention that I have within the last three weeks talked to the hon. Minister of Urban Affairs, but it is very difficult to get any answers from him because he keeps saying that they are --
Mr. Singer: He speaks well of you.
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: He is a fine gentleman, but he is not sure what his bill will do himself. And we are not going to get caught in that trap of putting up that kind of money that the bill indicates we, as a province, and the cities would have to put up to relocate those tracks.
Mr. Singer: You get caught in Krauss-Maffei traps and Spadina extensions.
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: And I got all the money back, too.
Mr. Singer: I’ll provide an analysis of that for you -- you left out half of it.
Mr. Speaker: Does the member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk have further questions?
LIQUOR AND BEER ADVERTISEMENTS
Mr. Nixon: I would like to ask a question of the Minister of Consumer and Commercial Relations. Since the Attorney General (Mr. McMurtry) has expressed his personal and deep concern about the problems with drinking, not only with the younger age groups but across the board, reflecting a view of concern across the community, is he now prepared to take some initiative to reduce the advertising pressures, particularly on young people and particularly based on beer ads on television? Is he going to take some stand on that, or are we just going to have the pious comments from the various members of the cabinet on this matter?
Hon. Mr. Handleman: Mr. Speaker, I think everybody on all sides of the House would share the concern the Attorney General has expressed. And I think the leader of the third party knows full well that this government has controlled advertising --
Mr. Haggerty: So what are you doing?
Hon. Mr. Handleman: -- both on television and in print; and we will continue to do so. The guidelines are very strict.
Mr. Singer: The other day you said you couldn’t control federal television --
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Handleman: We said we couldn’t control what is on television. We lay down the guidelines.
Mr. Singer: Which sentence do you believe --
Hon. Mr. Handleman: We have laid down the guidelines. They are in print. The new Act gives the government full control by way of regulation of setting advertising directives. I can assure everyone that this government will not hesitate to exercise that control where the need arises.
Mr. Speaker: Further questions?
Mr. Nixon: Supplementary: Would the minister not agree -- maybe he doesn’t watch television as much as I do; I don’t know -- that the pressure on young people based on those beer ads is a substantial one? And that his former colleague and himself, who said this is simply a competition among the brewers for a share of the market, is ridiculous -- and that, in fact, it is removing much of the freedom of choice from young people? Is he aware that in the second last copy of Time magazine there were 32 liquor ads in a magazine with a total of 90 pages? What does he mean he is doing something about it? He is not doing anything about it.
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: What about Time being wiped out?
Hon. Mr. Handleman: It’s possibly quite true that I don’t watch as much television as the hon. member, but last night in the House I was looking through some Canadian publication -- not Time magazine, one published down the street -- and it was far more full of liquor advertising than Time magazine was. I also examined the content of that advertising and it met every directive that has been laid down in relation to brand advertising; and there is no statistical data before us at all to indicate that consumption of beer rises in accordance with the style of advertising on television.
Mr. MacDonald: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker.
Mr. Speaker: The member for York South; a final supplementary.
Mr. MacDonald: May I ask the minister if the government is giving any consideration to a proposition put to it about 15 years ago for a mandatory contribution of $1 for every $1 spent on advertising by the liquor industry, that $1 to be used for coping with the social problems created by the excessive drinking of liquor?
Hon. Mr. Handleman: Mr. Speaker, as the hon. member well knows, the revenue from the sale of liquor and beer in this province goes into the consolidated revenue fund and that fund is the source of all of our fight against alcohol abuse.
Mr. Breithaupt: The cause of it, too.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. I mentioned that was a final supplementary. Does the hon. member have further questions?
Mr. Dean: Why don’t you ban the advertising? What use is it?
Hon. Mr. Handleman: They tried it in BC.
Mr. Deans: What use does it serve?
ASSISTANCE TO METIS COMMUNITIES
Mr. Nixon: Was that the final supplementary? I think maybe I will direct -- where is the Minister of Culture and Recreation -- has he gone again? There he is.
I would like to ask the Minister of Culture and Recreation if he intends to direct the Indian community secretariat to take more initiative in assisting the Metis communities in the north, which have indicated in their briefs to all three parties in the last few days that they feel the Indian community secretariat spends too much of its efforts in dealing with the band Indians, which are clearly the responsibility of the government of Canada? What is the problem in using the facilities, both in money and staff, in assisting the Metis community through the minister’s department?
Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, I don’t see any difficulty in doing that at all. If the hon. leader of the third party will recall, I think we have been working with that particular association.
Mr. Nixon: A supplementary: It may not really matter what the minister and I think about it -- the Metis feel they have not had the assistance they would expect and perhaps that’s the source of the thought.
Mr. Speaker: Is there a question?
Hon. Mr. Welch: I will be very glad to give them any assurances of the interest of the minister, anyway.
Mr. Lewis: I have a very specific supplementary. Would the minister table in this House, at the beginning of the week, the percentage of the moneys used by the Indian community branch on the treaty band Indians and that money which is given to the non-status and Metis? Maybe the tabling of the figures will reveal the problem.
Hon. Mr. Welch: I would be very glad to get that information.
Mr. Speaker: Has the member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk any further questions?
Mr. Nixon: No, Mr. Speaker.
RICHMOND HILL GO TRAIN
Mr. Williams: Mr. Speaker, a question of the Minister of Transportation and Communications: It is generally understood that the proposed GO Transit rail line from Richmond Hill to Union Station was scheduled to be operational in the spring of 1977; could he advise if there will be any delay in that proposed start-up time and if so for what reason and to what date?
Hon. Mr. Snow: I will have to get the hon. member a detailed report. I can tell him, though, that there will probably be some delays. There have been some delays due to some grade separations which have to be constructed -- or that the region of York, I believe, has requested he constructed. There have also been some delays in the establishment of station locations.
I believe there is another delay relating to the requirement of a piece of land for a right of way to which certain members of Toronto city council have objected. There may be some delays because of financial constraints. I will get the hon. member a full report; the programme is still on track but it may be a little slower than normal.
NORTH PICKERING DEVELOPMENT
Mr. Godfrey: A question of the Minister of Housing: In view of the two previous commitments the minister has made to examine the possibilities of staying the removal of families from the North Pickering development, I wish to ask him if he has come to a conclusion?
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: I have received two letters from Mr. Arthur Maloney, the Ombudsman, one on Nov. 25 and the other one delivered to my office yesterday -- late yesterday I might add. It suggested there is a deadline for a termination of the negotiations the Ombudsman is investigating as they concern North Pickering. It is my understanding there is no deadline for any negotiations to be terminated. The request to me from the Ombudsman is that I extend this deadline to which he is referring; but in fact there is no deadline to be extended. There are a number of property owners in the area who, I understand, will be going into court, but I have no deadline to extend at the request of the Ombudsman and his investigation can continue as he apparently is carrying it out.
Mr. Godfrey: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: My question was, will the minister extend the evictions notices which these families have received -- or at least the removal notices -- in view of the fact there is an active investigation going on at present into the means by which the land was acquired?
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: Mr. Speaker, I was advised as early as an hour before coming here this morning that there are no eviction notices to be terminated. If that is not correct, I certainly will look into that; but I have been told that there are no such notices, and I will have to investigate that matter.
Mr. Godfrey: Supplementary: Is the minister not aware, sir, that several families have been told to leave their premises on Dec. 31?
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: No, Mr. Speaker, I am not aware of that. I did look into this matter as soon as I received the request from the Ombudsman. I do know there are persons whose negotiations are completed who have, in fact, sold their properties to the Crown. Now, if they are being ordered to be evicted by Dec. 31, then I was not aware of that, sir; and I will look into that. I was not given that information.
AID TO AMATEUR SPORTS GROUPS
Mr. B. Newman: Mr. Speaker, I have a question of the Minister of Culture and Recreation: Is the minister aware of the great personal contribution made by many volunteers in coaching, managing and raising funds for many amateur athletic sports? Will the minister consider convincing his colleagues that in the publishing of programme books -- such as the one I hold here now -- the total proceeds of which are used in the development of amateur sport, the government either eliminate sales tax or make a grant equivalent to the provincial sales tax on the cost of publishing that programme book?
Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, the answer to the first question is yes, I do. I am quite aware. In fact, we should be very grateful -- I am glad the hon. member worded his question the way he did -- we should be very grateful for what’s going on in all the communities of this province on the part of literally thousands of people who make these programmes possible.
On the second question, the hon. member of course will know, as critic during the estimates when we were discussing this matter, of the substantial transfer of payments that go to sports governing bodies of this province. Indeed the matter to which he makes reference, that is the provision of funds to the sports governing bodies of this province, is always under review.
AID TO FILM INDUSTRY
Mr. Samis: A question of the Minister of Culture and Recreation: Can he inform the House if he and his deputy minister have completed their rounds of discussions with various groups and elements of the film industry in Ontario? If so, can he inform us whether he and his deputy minister have reached any policy conclusions in regard to assistance for the Canadian film industry in Ontario?
Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, there have been a number of meetings and a great deal of discussion on this particular matter, as the hon. member knows. We are still considering all of the points of view that have been expressed, and any policy announcement will be made in due course.
Mr. Samis: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: In those considerations, can the minister inform us if he has reached any policy conclusion on levies, quotas and the question of voluntary contributions by American distributors in Ontario?
Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, those particular matters would be dealt with as part of any policy statement which would be made.
Mr. Haggerty: Mr. Speaker, I would like to direct a question to the Minister of Health. Is it correct to assume that within the ministry’s austerity programme of closing many hospitals throughout Ontario, that one of those hospitals named is the old Welland County Hospital, now called the Annex, providing residence for the chronic care patients of Niagara south? Can the minister indicate to the Legislature where the 100 patients are to be relocated and assure the Legislature that overcrowding will not prevail in relocating them?
Hon. F. S. Miller: Mr. Speaker, as I have said from time to time, I do not intend to issue the list in the Legislature, but rather to talk to hospitals through their members on an individual basis when the time comes to consider a closing.
Mr. Sargent: Why is the minister afraid to issue the list?
Hon. F. S. Miller: I would think it obvious that we could not be causing overcrowding conditions, that would be one of the conditions but I would make no specific comment about that hospital.
AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE RATES
Mr. Makarchuk: A question of the Minister of Consumer and Commercial Relations: In view of the fact that, contrary to what he said the other day he has written me a letter acknowledging the receipt of specific examples of increases in insurance premiums on taxis in Brantford, can the minister at this time indicate what inquiries have been carried out and what are the results of those inquiries?
Hon. Mr. Handleman: It’s not contrary to what I said the other day. The hon. member asked me if I had evidence of exorbitant rate increases. I think it’s a matter of judgement as to what is considered exorbitant. I have received information concerning increased rates, not only in Brantford but in other communities. We have found that the claims experience of the insurance companies has been very drastically increased over the past three years.
In 1974 there was a tremendous increase in payouts for accident claims, and they have increased their rates. We’re looking into them and we find there is now a standard rate that is being assessed to taxi companies across the province. It will go into effect on the expiration of policies. The policies are not being cancelled. As far as we’ve been able to find out, the increase in rates is merely sufficient to cover the increase in the claims experienced.
Mr. Makarchuk: Supplementary to the minister of pious statements: If he considers 200 per cent not an exorbitant increase, would he indicate at this time what he considers as an exorbitant increase?
Hon. Mr. Handleman: I’m not aware of any 200 per cent increases.
Mr. Shore: I’d like to direct a question to the Treasurer. I’ve been pleased by the consistent statements by the Treasurer of an early budget. In view of his submission and documentation filed yesterday in the House, would the Treasurer inform this House as to whether he is still planning on having and presenting an early budget; and if so when?
Hon. Mr. McKeough: Obviously, for a variety of reasons, I would hope the budget would be relatively early. That depends on a great number of factors. I certainly wouldn’t want to do it before the Liberal leadership convention, for example. That would be unkind.
Mr. Breithaupt: You wouldn’t dare risk it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Want to bet?
Hon. Mr. McKeough: That has to be a very large part of our determination as to when the budget will be brought in, but there are a number of factors.
The urgency for an early budget, however, I think has been very much reduced because in effect as of yesterday, half of the budget is now available. It is not in as precise detail as it will be in the spending estimates which will ultimately be tabled by the Chairman of Management Board (Mr. Auld), but the broad outlines are there, and are now available. Ministries will be making their programmes known, so in effect half of the budget is already out As to the other half, the revenue side and tax changes, there isn’t, perhaps, the urgency there was to get the spending decisions made public so everyone can get on with their particular job.
Mr. Shore: Supplementary: I know we’re not allowed to debate this, but I believe coming close only counts in horseshoes. Until we have the whole budget, it’s very difficult to think --
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. The member is quite right.
Mr. Shore: I ask the minister, would he not agree that the Legislature should be a party to participating in the goals, priorities and objectives of the government of this province? As a result, until we see the total budget, long before the middle of the year, we have no input into that decision-making process. Could I hear his observation on that?
Hon. Mr. McKeough: The member will see it long before the middle of the year, there’s no question about that. I would completely agree that this Legislature is a forum in which priorities and goals should be put forward. We’ve been waiting patiently for some consistent Liberal policy for years. Go to it.
Mr. Mancini: That doesn’t wash anymore.
Mr. Lewis: There are three policy sources on their feet right there.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Four or five.
Mr. Speaker: Are these for supplementaries? I haven’t called on anyone yet.
Mr. Speaker: You were all standing up there at the same time. Was it for supplementaries? We will allow one. Which one will it be?
Mr. Sargent: Okay, I will go first.
Mr. Speaker: He volunteered. Mrs. Campbell: He must be --
Mr. Sargent: Supplementary on the Treasurer’s statement and in view of the reports of horror stories coming out of Ottawa from the auditor’s statement there -- and the blockbusters the Treasurer here must be coming up with in his auditor’s report -- with the Premier (Mr. Davis) talking last night about an early election --
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. This is supposed to be supplementary to the original question.
Mr. Sargent: It’s right on. Will there be then --
Hon. Mr. Davis: Where were you last night?
Mr. Nixon: He was out there holding a candle.
Mr. Makarchuk: He is asking the question.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. Would the member ask a supplementary question, not a new question.
Mr. Sargent: Will there be an auditor’s report prior to the election the Premier was talking about last night?
Mr. Speaker: There is no connection between that and the original question. The member for Fort William.
LAKEHEAD OFFICIAL PLAN
Mr. Angus: Mr. Speaker, a question to the Minister of Agriculture and Food --
Mr. Sargent: Mr. Speaker, I didn’t get an answer.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. I ruled the question out of order because it was not a question flowing from the original one. Will the member take his seat? The member for Fort William.
Mr. Angus: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. A question of the Minister of Agriculture and Food: Could the minister advise this House whether it is his ministry which is blocking approval by the Ministry of Housing of the Lakehead official plan rural amendments?
Hon. W. Newman: Mr. Speaker, I think that question should be more properly directed to the minister in charge of official plans, the Minister of Housing (Mr. Rhodes).
Mr. Angus: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: Could the minister advise this House whether his ministry did approve the design as submitted by the city of Thunder Bay as it relates to rural farm lands?
Hon. W. Newman: Mr. Speaker, as I said in this House before, I want to preserve agricultural land wherever possible. We would make comments on any official plan and those comments go to the Ministry of Housing, which makes final approval of official plans.
Mr. Eaton: Is the member for or against it?
Mr. Speaker: One final supplementary.
Mr. Angus: In his reply to the second question the minister said he did make comments. Could he advise the House what those comments were?
Hon. W. Newman: Mr. Speaker, I said those comments go to the Minister of Housing’s official plans branch, as they do from every other ministry in government, and that’s where the question should be placed. You should certainly have learned by now, after yesterday.
Mr. Nixon: What happened yesterday?
Mr. Sweeney: Mr. Speaker, a question of the Treasurer, please.
Mr. Martel: Did something happen yesterday? Have Darcy tell it.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
EDUCATION SPENDING CEILINGS
Mr. Sweeney: In view of the Treasurer’s remarks yesterday and his remarks to a question a few minutes ago, can he tell us whether or not this year the school boards of this province are going to get expenditure ceilings? When are they going to be published and approximately what will they be?
Hon. Mr. McKeough: I understand, Mr. Speaker, that the Minister of Education (Mr. Wells) and others will be meeting with the chairmen of the school boards -- all the school boards of the province -- and the administrators, I believe next Thursday.
Mr. Williams: Mr. Speaker, a question of the Treasurer: In light of the events that transpired on the west coast last evening, would he care to make supplementary comment to the comments made in the House yesterday afternoon?
Mr. MacDonald: Tell us about the Liberal.
Mr. Breaugh: Tell us about the one Tory who got in.
Mr. Speaker: I hope these are very brief.
Hon. Mr. McKeough: Mr. Speaker, I --
Mr. Lewis: This matter is very important.
Hon. Mr. McKeough: You can’t take it over there, can you?
Mr. Speaker: Order. Order, please.
Mr. Speaker: I think that was very provocative. We will call on the member for Beaches-Woodbine (Ms. Bryden).
Mr. Lewis: What’s all this bravado?
Mr. O’Neil: Point of order.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. Did somebody have a point of order?
Mr. O’Neil: Mr. Speaker, on a point of order, our condolences. I would like to express our sympathy for what happened on the west coast and we have a little memento from the Liberal Party, if the page would deliver this to the Leader of the Opposition, please.
Mr. MacDonald: Did you see the Liberal vote?
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Mr. O’Neil: You did very badly; I hope you accept it in the spirit that it’s given.
Mr. Speaker: All right; now could we get back to the question period? I think we should allow the Leader of the Opposition to open the parcel.
Mr. Lewis: No, I think I’ll reserve the right to open it later.
Mr. O’Neil: Come on, Mr. Speaker. We went through a great deal of trouble for this and --
Mr. Lewis: At least we held our popular vote.
Mr. Speaker: Thank you very much. Let’s get back to where we were supposed to be. Let’s get on with the question period. The member for Beaches-Woodbine.
Ms. Bryden: Thank you, Mr. Speaker, let’s talk about important things. I have another question of the provincial Treasurer based on his statement yesterday about spending restraints.
Mr. Martel: What’s that -- the coalition party?
Mr. Deans: The next thing, you two will be getting together.
Ms. Bryden: Also I would like clarification of a statement which he made this morning to the Provincial-Municipal Liaison Committee on that restraint programme. It’s a two-part question.
First, what effect does the provincial Treasurer think his proposals to postpone and stretch out the capital works programmes of the province will have on the Ontario unemployment rate, which is now six per cent and involves, I think, 190,000 people?
Second, did I hear him correctly this morning when, discussing the social assistance expenditure forecast for next year, he appeared to say that he expected increases in the numbers who would require welfare -- perhaps due to this programme -- and that the rate of payment could possibly he cut?
Hon. Mr. McKeough: Answering the second part of the question first, Mr. Speaker, I said that although we would be attempting to put limits on various kinds of open-ended programmes, in terms of the social assistance programmes the one which of course, affects the municipalities, most directly -- really the only one -- is the general welfare assistance payments. In my view that’s something we can’t cut or can’t subject to a spending limit of some sort or another. It must be in our society, a truly open-ended programme; for people in need there is no such thing as an exhausted budget.
As to the part of the question dealing with reduction in our capital programme, the programme of the Ministry of Transportation and Communications and Government Services undoubtedly will have some effect on employment levels, in the construction trades particularly. We would hope that slack is and will continue to be taken up by an expanding growth in the private sector. We don’t subscribe to the theory that the government can spend its way out of unemployment situations.
Mr. Speaker: We will allow a supplementary.
Ms. Bryden: If he anticipates that the welfare numbers will go up, is he going to allow any programmes to get people off welfare?
Hon. Mr. McKeough: Mr. Speaker, those are questions which would more properly be asked at the appropriate time of the Minister of Community and Social Service.
LAND USE POLICY
Mr. Riddell: A question to the Treasurer. Does he intend to follow up on the former Treasurer’s commitment to develop a land use plan for the Province of Ontario? If so, can we expect such a plan before much more prime class 1 and 2 agricultural land is taken out of production?
Hon. Mr. McKeough: Mr. Speaker, we have heard on a number of occasions the determination of the government, expressed as recently as 10 minutes ago by the Minister of Agriculture and Food (Mr. W. Newman). Preservation of good farm land to the maximum extent possible is a policy of this government. The member got it from him five minutes ago. Open your ears.
Mr. Riddell: How long?
Mr. Breithaupt: Just because he says so doesn’t mean there is one.
Mr. Riddell: You’ve been talking about it for five years.
Hon. W. Newman: Don’t be so silly. Grow up.
Mr. Riddell: Where is the planning?
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. The member for Peterborough is waiting to ask a question. Let’s show her the courtesy of cutting out the crossfire here.
Mr. Mancini: It’s a figment of their imagination.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. The member for Peterborough.
MONITORING OF PHONE CALLS
Ms. Sandeman: A question of the Minister of Correctional Services: Is the minister aware that when a parent of a child in training school phones that child and expects to have a private conversation, the conversation between parent and child is monitored by a staff member on a separate line?
An hon. member: Shame.
Hon. J. R. Smith: Mr. Speaker, as I am unaware of that situation, I would be pleased to hear from the hon. member the exact details of the school in question and the parent involved.
Ms. Sandeman: Supplementary, if I may, Mr. Speaker
Mr. Speaker: We’ll allow a supplementary.
Ms. Sandeman: Does the minister agree with me that this is an unacceptable invasion of parental privacy?
Hon. J. R. Smith: Mr. Speaker, that would involve a determination as to whether or not it was actually the parent calling. I’d like to investigate this matter and reply to the hon. member the reasons for this, and I would appreciate hearing from her, the name of the institution involved. I don’t know whether or not this is policy for all training schools.
Mr. Speaker: The member for Grey-Bruce.
Mr. MacDonald: Supplementary --
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. I think perhaps we should go to a new question if you don’t mind. I’ll recognize the member for Grey-Bruce.
LEGAL DRINKING AGE
Mr. Sargent: A question of the Attorney General: We’re aware of his desire to cut down on the alcoholic consumption --
Mr. Yakabuski: Question?
Mr. Sargent: -- of the younger segment of our society --
Mr. Yakabuski: Older too.
Mr. Sargent: -- but how does he equate the fact that young fellows of 18 were given command of a $1 million bomber to save democracy and he is not even going to give them the rights of majority? What is wrong with his thinking when he takes this outlook on the young people?
Mr. Yakabuski: Conflict of interests.
Hon. Mr. McMurtry: I don’t regard that as a question, Mr. Speaker.
Mr. Sargent: What was the answer? I didn’t hear it. I didn’t hear the minister.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. Does the hon. minister wish to repeat his answer?
Hon. Mr. McMurtry: Mr. Speaker, I said I did not regard that as a question.
Mr. Sargent: I will start over again.
Mr. Speaker: No; order, please.
Mr. Sargent: Always looking for publicity. Quit the publicity-seeking and get down to business over there.
CONDITIONS IN CORRECTIONAL INSTITUTIONS
Mr. Wildman: Mr. Speaker, I have a question of the Minister of Correctional Services. Since the overcrowding in provincial jails in general has become critical, and the Soo jail has been averaging about twice its capacity, does the visit of the deputy minister to Algoma this week indicate that the ministry intends to reopen McCreight’s Camp near Thessalon or some similar facility to ease the burden on the Soo jail?
Hon. J. R. Smith: Mr. Speaker, I visited that institution myself, as did Mr. Garraway, last week. There is severe overcrowding, and Mr. Dunbar and his staff have had a difficult time managing the situation. However, we have tentative plans to make some change in the use of some of the office facilities there, perhaps the use of a portable on the site as a temporary measure. At this time we have no intention of reopening the camp the member referred to.
Mr. Wildman: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker.
Mr. Speaker: The question period has expired.
I might just report to the House, as I said I would in response to the tabling of the document by the member for Timiskaming (Mr. Bain). While the covering statement from the member, which was unsigned, is addressed to the Lieutenant Governor and the legislative assembly, the document itself actually calls on the government, through the Ministry of Health, to take executive action in establishing a chronic care hospital in the old Kirkland District Hospital, and therefore it clearly contravenes Standing Order 84 in that it contemplates thereby a charge on the public revenue.
I have, therefore, as I undertook to do in such cases, forwarded it to the Minister of Health for his consideration.
Mr. Bain: Mr. Speaker, I would just like to thank you for your co-operation in the matter.
Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, could I rise on a point of personal privilege? I would like to reintroduce to some members of this House, and introduce for perhaps the first time to some of the newer members of the House, the distinguished gentleman in your gallery, sir, who for 12 years represented the beautiful riding of York Mills, was my predecessor in the Ministry of Labour and was also Attorney General of this province, the Hon. Dalton Bales.
Mr. Speaker: Presenting reports.
Mr. MacDonald presented the interim report of the select committee inquiring into Hydro’s proposed bulk rates.
Hon. Mr. Welch: This report is presented, Mr. Speaker, on the understanding that we would not have discussion today, but it would go on the order paper to be scheduled.
Mr. MacDonald: Mr. Speaker, before the motion, may I just add that copies of the report are going to be placed on the desks of all members so they will have an opportunity to read the substance of the report and note the fact that it was signed by all Conservative members, all New Democratic members and one Liberal member. Two Liberal members dissented and the substance of their dissent is found in the report.
Mr. Deans: They offered no alternatives.
Hon. Mr. Welch moved that the report be referred to the order paper to be called later for debate.
Motion agreed to.
Mr. Speaker: Motions.
Introduction of bills.
Orders of the day.
Clerk of the House: The first order, resuming the adjourned debate on the amendment to the motion for an address in reply to the speech of the Honourable the Lieutenant Governor at the opening of the session.
THRONE SPEECH DEBATE (CONTINUED)
Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, as I rise this morning to participate in the traditional Throne Speech debate, I want to join others who have spoken to congratulate you on your re-election to the position of Speaker of this House. The responsibilities, particularly in the existing situation, are somewhat more onerous, and I say to you, sir, that you are managing to maintain the dignity and decorum of this House with a degree of flexibility that on occasion I find somewhat refreshing.
I would also suggest, sir, that I think it is important for all of us to recognize that while we understand the give and take here in the House, there is an importance that we must attach to the way in which we conduct ourselves, particularly during the question period and particularly for the young people who come to see us every day and who may not totally understand the sort of relationship that exists in an environment such as we have. I would also like to express my congratulations to the newly elected Deputy Speaker and chairman of the committee of the whole House and say to him most sincerely that all of us have been impressed, not only by the very dignified manner in which he conducts the activities of the House, but the total objectivity he brings to his responsibility; and I say that very sincerely.
Mr. Speaker, I intend to touch on a number of matters this morning, but there are several things that I really do not want to mention. I could refer to the results yesterday in the Province of British Columbia, but I would really rather not do so.
Mr. Lewis: Why not?
Hon. Mr. Davis: I could make reference to the rebuke of the NDP, socialist, free-spending flagship of that great province, but that would not be fair and I am going to leave that unsaid.
Indeed, I might even suggest that when the fate of a wealthy and industrialized province is touched by socialist zeal, British Columbia would appear to indicate that the people are somehow turned off by the socialist utopia.
Mr. Samis: What more are you going to leave unsaid?
Hon. Mr. Davis: But, sir, that would be more than unfair to the Leader of the Opposition (Mr. Lewis); I would not want to be unfair, so I will not say it. I know how weary and tired and disappointed he must be this morning --
Mr. Lewis: I am exhilarated.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- after the events of last night in British Columbia --
Mr. Lewis: Other governments fall.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- even after the events in this House and outside the House last night --
Mr. MacDonald: I don’t know how you can be so enthusiastic about the virtual extinction of the Tory party.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- but I really won’t speak to him or his followers of these things here this morning. However, I just want to make one brief observation. Knowing just how efficient the New Democratic Party is, I have a feeling that the section in the NDP pamphlet -- and I quote from it: “Striking it rich in the NDP provinces,” which deals with British Columbia -- is probably being redrafted this morning in various parts of this country, and perhaps even in the Province of Ontario.
Mr. Martel: If you were down to 17 people, you’d say the same thing.
Hon. Mr. Davis: The only thing I would add is that the people of Ontario know that I wouldn’t say these things because they might be painful to the Leader of the Opposition --
An hon. member: You are above reproach.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I will be content to think with them and let the people of Ontario share those particular thoughts. Mr. Speaker, there is also an occasion, such as this, for members -- and this includes Premiers -- to express a personal word of appreciation to their supporters in the ridings that elect them. I have been most fortunate in the former county of Peel, the former riding of Peel North, and now the new riding of Brampton, to have had some measure of support now since 1959.
It has not always been easy for the people in my riding to totally accept all the things the local member does, but I have been gratified by the extent of their support these many years, and I would like to take this opportunity in the Throne debate to express my appreciation to them.
There are many who claimed some special expertise, including journalists -- and most journalists do, as they should -- who doubted whether it would be possible for the Legislature of Ontario to function for any period of time, however brief, in a minority situation. Indeed, I think I can recall one press report before the Legislature opened that indicated that one member of the opposition thought we might only last as a Parliament for some 10 or 12 days.
Given such prognostications, I feel that each member of this House, and I say this most sincerely, particularly the House leaders of all three parties, are to be congratulated on the sincere and careful efforts they have extended so as to allow this Legislature to function so effectively.
In terms of both general procedure and specific arrangements for certain bills, I believe the people of Ontario have been particularly well served by the three House leaders -- the member for Wentworth (Mr. Deans), the member for Kitchener (Mr. Breithaupt), and our own special member, the member for Brock (Mr. Welch). There is, of course, unavoidably, in any democratic system --
Mr. Lewis: The member for Brock?
Hon. Mr. Davis: I tell you, he is very special.
Mr. Lewis: He was re-elected.
Hon. Mr. Davis: That’s right. Even apart from his re-election, he is very special.
In any democratic system there are certain mechanics in government which defy partisan manipulation and which must elicit a high standard of responsibility in its own right. I sense this, as I’m sure all members do. And while no one in this Legislature has reason to have any sense of long-term security -- and I like to look across the House and say there are some over there who should have less of a sense of that than those of us on this side of the House, but that’s a somewhat prejudiced observation.
Hon. Mr. Davis: We have, I believe, set the stage in such a way that each party has, and will have, an opportunity to evaluate his decisions; to evaluate his judgements and actions in a fairly rational and reasonable atmosphere. There are odd periods when that may not be totally true. The member for Grey-Bruce (Mr. Sargent) has left. However, I don’t want it reported that I don’t think he’s rational, because I haven’t said that.
Mr. Nixon: You are always here to listen to him.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Following the election, there were some who, having observed the elements that made up the 1975 provincial campaign, concluded that this Legislature might not be blessed by the most rational of atmospheres in which our government might be permitted to conduct the province’s business. But I am the first, Mr. Speaker, to share with the House my own sense of surprise -- I think I can state it that way -- over some of the remarkable changes in opposition attitudes and positions which have characterized some of the events in this Legislature.
Mr. Cassidy: What about the changes in your own positions?
Hon. Mr. Davis: First of all, let me say to the Leader of the Opposition -- to whom I expressed my congratulations on election night on television at Bramalea City Centre; it wasn’t the easiest thing to do, but I did it with sincerity -- that I think he makes such a superb Leader of the Opposition that perhaps he deserves that job for at least another decade before retirement.
Mr. Lewis: It’s more than I expected a year ago.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I would make the statement that I have a feeling that he was the most surprised man in Ontario that night.
Mr. Lewis: Right.
Hon. Mr. Davis: But I have to note that his own transformation is worthy of note.
Mr. Breithaupt: It is like Laurel and Hardy.
Hon. Mr. Davis: This province needs an intelligent, a cutting, a witty, articulate intense and dedicated Leader of the Opposition. That is what this province needs.
Mr. Lewis: And thank you for the pamphlet.
Hon. Mr. Davis: It needs a man who can use vocabulary in the most cutting and effective of ways.
Mr. Shore: I think you fit the bill.
Hon. Mr. Davis: It needs a man who can use verbiage -- and the Leader of the Opposition can use verbiage -- to cut a path through every bureaucratic weed that may sprout before him.
An hon. member: That was the good news.
Hon. Mr. Davis: That is why I wish the new Leader of the Opposition success in his role. And that is why I feel so confident as to the fashion in which the responsibilities of that onerous position were to be discharged. To say that the new Leader of the Opposition, the new transformed Leader of the Opposition, the new Stephen Lewis, if I can be unparliamentary for a moment --
Mr. Lewis: That’s almost familiar.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Well, we won’t get too familiar.
Mr. Lewis: I am sure not.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- is so different from the parliamentarian and man of sharp ideology that we have come to know and regard with great affection, only raises questions as to whether the contents of the brown and orange bottle have indeed changed.
Mr. Cassidy: You were doing so well, why have you stopped?
Hon. Mr. Davis: Outwardly, the Leader of the Opposition has become so moderate, so balanced, so cool about such matters as the working man, the labour union and the interests of the organized elements of the socialist movement that I would think, were I a socialist, which I am not, that I would ask the question as to whether the party faithful elected a socialist or a Conservative in a hurry. That’s what I would be asking if I were a member of that party.
Mr. MacDonald: Talk about verbiage.
Mr. Lewis: It really depends on how Ontario answers the question.
Hon. Mr. Davis: That’s right. But I am asking too. Just as the Leader of the Opposition has and is prepared to indicate that he has not restrained from indicating his affection for the Premier of this province along with great respect and admiration, though I am sure but he has never totally used those terms, I have no difficulty in indicating a similar attitude toward him.
Mr. Deans: I can’t stand this. Please stop it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: If I am at all restrained in making that indication --
Mr. Lewis: You are a socialist in reverse.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- it is because I am trying to ascertain --
Mr. Breithaupt: Are you two planning a long weekend?
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- his new political image and his true political affiliation. I like to know a lot about a man before I make my final determination.
Mr. Lewis: About what?
Hon. Mr. Davis: Not about what you think.
Mr. Gaunt: What is this, love in the morning or something?
Mr. Lewis: I should reserve a room in the Chateau Frontenac.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I have to say that the changes, the transformation, the courtliness, the lack of ideology, the lack of any socialist zeal is a bit unnerving, not because I happen to relish those qualities, because I don’t, but because somehow the photograph is more blurred, less precise, less indicative.
Mr. MacDonald: Some of your supporters wonder where your Tory zeal has gone.
Hon. Mr. Davis: It’s as if the motto -- and I remember that motto so well --
Mr. MacDonald: Rent control. Ask Claire Hoy.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- “tomorrow starts today” has been replaced with “vote today; find out what you really got tomorrow.”
Mr. Breithaupt: That sounds like a cure for a hangover.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, I want to turn and welcome back the member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk (Mr. Nixon).
Mr. Cassidy: You were just warming up.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Oh, I am coming back.
Mr. Lewis: Oh, good!
Hon. Mr. Davis: Don’t leave, I am coming back. I understand that he has decided not to seek the leadership of his party when it chooses a new leader in January. I want to say at the outset --
Mr. Nixon: The outset? How long is this going to go on?
Hon. Mr. Davis: I am going to take a few minutes with you. I am going to try and help you a little bit.
Mr. Lewis: You practically destroyed me with my party.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I want to say at the outset that I wish him as a member of this Legislature and a man who represents the interests of the people of Brant-Oxford-Norfolk, nothing but the very best in the years ahead.
Mr. Nixon: And over a million other citizens of the province.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I do have to point out, however, that it would be dishonest for me today to leave the impression that while I have a high regard for the hon. member, I have the same type of attitude toward the campaign recently waged by my friends in the third party as I have for the campaign waged by my friends in Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition.
Mr. Nixon: You were in bed with them; that is why you liked it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I think both campaigns --
Mr. Sweeney: Take it easy.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I think both campaigns were indicative --
Mr. Nixon: I am not sure which one of you got the shafting.
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: You got the shafting.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- of how each one of those parties might respond to the challenge of government. I think campaigns should be indicative of that sort of capacity.
We might look at those campaigns for some sort of edification in that regard. You know, there was a lot of talk during the last campaign about spending. That talk suggested that we spent too much on education; I can recall that. I can also recall some other observations, going back a number of years, and how we were urged, when the former education critic of the Liberal Party had millions and millions of dollars of expenditure he would wish to add to the programmes of the government -- but, that’s going back, I acknowledge that.
Mr. Eakins: Spoiled your federal plans.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Too much money on health care. I can recall those observations. Too much money oil government itself. Some of it was responsible -- a lot of it was cheap. A lot of it was cheap.
Mr. Sweeney: Have you read it?
Hon. Mr. Davis: You know, in fact, the third party in this House approached the people of Ontario --
Mr. Breithaupt: That is the only place we are the third party.
Hon. Davis: -- through one of the most simple-minded and vindictive advertising campaigns ever mounted in our provincial democracy -- and I say that very objectively. And it was --
Mr. Nixon: We said we couldn’t afford you -- and we can’t afford you now. You know it now. You know it now.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- and you happen to know that it is true.
Mr. Mancini: That is a lot of horse manure.
Mr. Speaker: That remark is unparliamentary.
Mr. Nixon: You are trimming your sails now; you are cutting your costs.
Hon. Mr. Davis: You happen to know that it is true.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: His key phrase, Mr. Speaker, you will recall, was: “You just can’t afford another Davis government.” I remember it well.
Mr. Breithaupt: And Maxwell Henderson probably agrees.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I have got some news for the members opposite.
Mr. Shore: Where is your Treasurer (Mr. McKeough)? He can’t take it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I really wasn’t personally offended by that slogan. As silly as I thought it was, it did not offend me personally. But there were some people who were very deeply offended. And they mentioned it to me during the campaign -- and they have mentioned it to me on many occasions thereafter.
Mr. Sweeney: They didn’t vote for you.
Hon. Mr. Davis: They were offended, and I will tell you why: Because in many cases they represented the sectors of the population for whom the people of Ontario, through their government, were spending the largest amount of money. They were the school trustees; they were the teachers; they were the students; the members of parent-teacher associations. They were concerned because they knew that money was tight -- and we heard this for the last two years. That budgets were carefully made -- and that education remained one of the priorities of any civilized society.
Mr. Nixon: You threw $400 million away just last April.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Come on; you guys can’t have it both ways, and you should know it.
Mr. Nixon: There was $400 million you threw away buying votes -- clearly buying votes.
Hon. Mr. Davis: So, when the Liberal Party attacked education spending --
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- when they were attacking this --
Mr. Nixon: It is the quality of education we attacked.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Oh sure. I would say to the member, who is a former teacher, that I could never understand his attack on the quality of education. Because, while I am a total layman -- I never taught anything but Sunday school -- I happen to know this about education: The quality of education is relevant to one thing only.
Mr. Breithaupt: Did you really learn anything?
Hon. Mr. Davis: That is, the capacity of the day-to-day classroom in the classrooms across this province, and the teacher. And I say very simply --
Mr. Sargent: Today they are empty. They are empty today.
Hon. Mr. Davis: When you attack quality, you are talking about the competence of the individual teachers in the Province of Ontario -- and that is just what you are doing. That is just what you are doing. Ask the member for whatever the riding is; he bows what I am talking about.
Mr. Nixon: You are off the beam.
Mr. Sargent: All of a sudden you are the good guys.
Hon. Mr. Davis: He knows what I am talking about.
Mr. Mancini: I have never heard anybody speak so highly of himself.
Hon. Mr. Wells: The member for Kitchener-Wilmot (Mr. Sweeney) is awfully quiet right now.
Hon. Mr. Welch: The member for Kitchener-Wilmot agrees, yes.
Hon. Mr. Davis: The people of this province are not fools. They are not really duped by even the most --
Mr. Ruston: They will throw you out next time -- all the way.
Mr. Nixon: Over a million of them voted for us.
Hon. Mr. Davis: That’s right. Listen. I have listened to it for a couple of years. It is your turn today and they are not easily duped by the most Machiavellian campaign of simpleminded slogans. They know what --
Mr. Conway: Why don’t you tell them tomorrow in Hamilton? You ran a rotten campaign. You tell that to them.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Come on. Relax.
Mr. Conway: You tell that to them. Undignified disgrace. A disgrace and you know it. Just a bunch of drivel.
Mr. Conway: You go around this province with a cheque book in your hand.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Do you know what the people of this province know? Do you know what they know, Mr. Speaker?
Hon. Mr. Bennett: You weren’t doing so bad. You couldn’t sign the cheque, that was the only trouble.
Mr. Lewis: This is quite enjoyable.
Hon. Mr. Davis: It’s a fun day. It’s Friday.
Mr. Lewis: Why not?
Hon. Mr. Davis: Why not? Relax, we are not through yet.
Do you know what the people of this province do sense, Mr. Speaker? I have felt this ever since entering political life; they know what decency, humanity and social justice mean --
Mr. Conway: An alliance for bilingualism.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- in a modem society. They know how much they must be prepared to pay for the continuation of those values in our own civilized society. They also know that while one can always talk about economy, one can always seek to reduce costs which we are attempting to do and which my government has done --
Mr. Nixon: No, you haven’t --
Hon. Mr. Davis: That’s right.
Mr. Nixon: That’s why you are hesitating.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Yes, we have.
Mr. Nixon: Four hundred million dollars last March.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Yes, we have. They also know, Mr. Speaker --
Mr. Nixon: Threw it away.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- that to talk about cutting back financial support in an undefined and seemingly indiscriminate fashion is irresponsible.
Mr. Breithaupt: Just like Maxwell Henderson did.
Hon. Mr. Davis: It is deceitful and it is inhuman. They sense that and they know it. While the people of this province for those five weeks were being asked to believe they just could not afford another Davis government --
Mr. Sargent: That’s right.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- do you know the decision they made?
Mr. Conway: They are going to take two steps.
Hon. Mr. Davis: The decision they made was that they just could not afford another Nixon opposition. That was the decision the people of this province made.
That happens to be the fact and I say this very objectively after much thought. That is not a vindication for any one party or for any one leader but for a particular approach to public responsibility.
I don’t minimize it. There was acrimony in the past campaign. There is no doubt about that.
Mr. Sweeney: You started it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: You’ve really got to be kidding.
Hon. Mr. Welch: Does the member believe that?
Mr. Sweeney: The Premier set the whole tone for the election.
Hon. Mr. Davis: It is an attitude -- and I say this once again as carefully and sincerely as I can -- which I hope responsible men and women on both sides of this House are now prepared to rise above. Let it be understood, both for future debates --
Mr. Conway: You forced the Ottawa government. You of all people.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- and future campaigns, I want to serve notice, that our party does not intend to be abused for the necessary steps we have taken on behalf of the citizens of this province.
We are not going to apologize for the social progress made in this province; for the levels of social equity enjoyed by the people of Ontario; or for the leadership that this province has provided for every other jurisdiction in Canada.
I believe, however, that the 1975 campaign was perhaps something of a watershed --
Mr. Lewis: It’s also over.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Not really.
Mr. Breithaupt: A waterfall.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- during difficult economic times, during a crisis of national economic leadership and during a period when general public distrust of those at all levels of all governments was perhaps at its highest. Barely 12 months after the people of Ontario gave a national mandate to a government in Ottawa which has since been found guilty of more reversals and betrayals than perhaps any other in our history, it was a tough time to seek re-election.
Mr. Makarchuk: You crawled into bed with them.
Mr. Breithaupt: And you abdicate your responsibility to them.
Hon. Mr. Davis: We’ll get around to that, and you people are going to have a chance to think about it very carefully before next week.
Mr. Eakins: Why don’t you run for the leadership?
Mr. Conway: Don’t criticize --
Hon. Mr. Davis: In my experience in politics, Mr. Speaker -- and I share this --
Mr. Cassidy: We thought it was something we knew.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- it has been my experience that governments are not elected but they are defeated. I think this is true.
Mr. Breithaupt: That’s right.
Hon. Mr. Davis: The people of Ontario made a very real choice on election day; and while it was not a majority choice, it was clear enough --
Mr. Conway: Thirty-six per cent --
Mr. Breithaupt: Thirty-six to 34 per cent.
Hon. Mr. Davis: They were not prepared to defeat this government. What’s more, they were not prepared to ask either of the other two parties in this province to form a government. That, I hope, they will remember.
Mr. Speaker, I don’t want in any way to back off from what I’ve said by way of congratulations to the Leader of the Opposition --
Mr. MacDonald: But!
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- but unless my calculations are horribly wrong -- and I’ve been known to be wrong in mental calculations, but never as wrong as the member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk -- his party only improved its position by about one percentage point. Am I right in that?
Mr. Breithaupt: One and a half.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Okay. One point something. Now that is a performance -- no question about it --
Mr. Lewis: It’s not as bad as losing several percentage points.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- at a time when our friends in the third party took a reactionary position -- and I think that’s a good way to describe it in general terms --
Mr. Conway: Ask the member for Ottawa West (Mr. Morrow).
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- that did for progressive politics in this province what Jack the Ripper did for door-to-door canvassing.
Mr. Conway: You’re less than parliamentary, Mr. Premier.
Mr. Lewis: Did you read this text before you gave it?
Hon. Mr. Davis: I not only read it, I helped with it!
Mr. Ruston: Did Claire Hoy write that for you?
Mr. Lewis: Get another speechwriter.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I thought you would enjoy that one.
Mr. Eakins: Get on with your speech.
Hon. Mr. Davis: One would have thought that some greater number of people would have been attracted to our friends who are now the loyal opposition, but it didn’t happen.
Mr. Lewis: It takes time. It takes time.
Mr. Martel: You lost a hell of a number of friends.
Hon. Mr. Davis: If there is any group in this Legislature that should concern itself about the election, it is surely our friends in the third party or the Liberal Party of this province. They come to this House -- and I pay credit -- enriched by new blood and encouraged by greater popular support, although they are forced to reside in third place.
Let us remember the context in which that campaign took place and the percentages of public support that each party faced a few months before the wit was issued. This is something that I hope our friends in the third party recall and remember.
There was one point, not a year previous to the 1975 campaign, when we were told by the pollsters, the experts, that our friends in the third party enjoyed a 12-point lead -- remember how enthusiastic they were -- over those of us on this side of the House. They were really quite encouraged you could sense it.
Mr. Nixon: That’s right.
Hon. Mr. Davis: How they must have been tickled by the feathers of their federal friends who came in to help with all they could muster. Do the members remember that great picnic?
Mr. Mancini: They’re your federal friends flow.
Mr. Breithaupt: You’re closer to the feds than we are.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Do they remember the helicopter ride as the Prime Minister of Canada, on a totally non-partisan occasion, flew in at public expense to that great picnic? Do they remember it? It was a great day.
Mr. Sweeney: How about Sudbury? How about the trip to Sudbury?
Mr. Cassidy: You know something about that plan too, don’t you?
Hon. Mr. Davis: I’m told -- and it’s really only gossip, of course -- that the member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk -- would the members believe this? --
Mr. Sargent: You’re the last guy in the world to talk about that.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- that the leader of the third party even structured a committee to deal with the transition to power. I ask him, is it true he had such a committee?
Mr. Breithaupt: And they’re still working.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I can imagine how busy they were; and I have to ask, what are they doing now?
Mr. Nixon: They’re still working.
Mr. Breithaupt: We have them on hold.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, as I attempted to Stress all through those rather heady days, the poll that really was relevant was the one at which the people of Ontario expressed their views as citizens. On Sept. 18 -- and this is simple mathematics -- they reversed a 12-point lead and it became a two-point lead for our party, and that happens to be 14 points whichever way you do your mathematics.
Mr. Sweeney: How many seats did you lose?
Hon. Mr. Davis: While I know we don’t know much about the three Rs, it is 14 points.
Mr. Sargent: Get on with your speech.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I am, and I know the member for Grey-Bruce is enjoying every minute of it. When is he going to declare his candidacy?
Mr. Sargent: You might rue the day.
Hon. Mr. Davis: What the Liberal Party of Ontario needs is an intelligent, rational, aggressive, perceptive leader, and the member for Grey-Bruce fits all of those qualifications. We wish him well.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Maybe not the member for Wilson Heights (Mr. Singer), but the rest of them wish him well.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I am nearly finished this part of my observations, so you can relax. I acknowledge there may not have been an overwhelming victory for any one party.
Mr. Sweeney: There was.
Hon. Mr. Davis: No, there wasn’t. I wish there had been. I am human, and I would have loved to have had another 30 seats, but we didn’t. I will tell you something else, and I hope you learn from it, there was an overwhelming defeat handed out by the people of this province to one party in the province.
Mr. Sweeney: Which one?
Mr. Mancini: The Premier’s.
Hon. Mr. Davis: And that happens to be the Liberal Party of Ontario.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I will tell you partly why, Mr. Speaker, and I don’t intend to talk about it again.
Mr. Reid: Good.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Irresponsibility, vindictiveness, personal attacks --
Mr. Mancini: That sounds like a Tory platform.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- and aspersions as to the sincerity and integrity of any public figure come home to roost when they are baseless and unjustified, and I hope we see the end of it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I would say to the hon. member I am having a little difficulty because I have got a sore throat this morning.
Mr. Conway: How can you talk in those terms? Talk to the Minister of Consumer and Commercial Affairs (Mr. Handleman), the member for Ottawa West (Mr. Morrow), and the member for Renfrew South (Mr. Yakabuski) and then come back here.
Hon. Mr. Welch: The member for Renfrew North had better read this book on violence.
Mr. Sweeney: Chief speak with forked tongue.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Mr. Speaker: Will the member for Renfrew North try to contain himself?
Mr. Mancini: Ask the Premier to contain himself.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I am one of the most self-contained people I know. I was nearly going to tell you how my wife describes me, but I won’t do that; it’s irrelevant.
Hon. Mr. Davis: There is one other poll I feel concerned about and I feel very strongly about, in discussing for a moment or two, some of the priorities facing the administration and facing the people of this province. This poll was done recently in the United States of America. I know we don’t want to be influenced too much by what is done there perhaps, but it indicates that 63 per cent of the people of that country believe that most of their leaders, elected or otherwise, have lied or have been dishonest with them most of the time.
I think that gives us pause to reflect. It’s an interesting poll. And for everyone in this House I think it should be just a shade disturbing. As this continent tries to fight its way out of an economic recession and as we attempt to establish priorities as a society -- and I’m not just talking money -- it is interesting to speculate how much the average man and woman today has faith in what any group of politicians anywhere is trying to do. There has been a tradition, in modern, pluralistic politics, that manifested itself in the campaign of promises. This has happened to all political parties.
Periodically, everyone who has sought office in the last 20 years has done so on the grounds that he or she wished to solve problems, to right wrongs, to balance inequities and to keep things running smoothly. Politicians were elected to take flexible stands, to involve the public and above all, because they indicated that no problem was too great and no solution too difficult or expensive to make happen. I don’t stand here for a moment and suggest for one minute that I’m innocent of that type of politics or that my colleagues are innocent or that any member of this Legislature might honestly claim that he or she is totally innocent.
There has been in North American politics and in the politics of this country and this province a sort of incalculable push toward the can-do spirit. The name of government has been action -- strong, definitive, clear-cut -- and the name of government has been problem-solving. I think that that is a fairly objective assessment. No matter what the cost, no matter who had to pay the bill, every problem could be solved and every inequity could be righted.
There are those who would think that the major division on the floor of this House between the party which I have the privilege and honour to lead and the party which the Leader of the Opposition (Mr. Lewis) leads is one of ideology or philosophy. While that may be the case on many points, the real difference is in a very simple area that is totally devoid of philosophy or ideology. It is one of perspective, of very real difference as to how each views the reality of today’s Ontario and today’s politics.
My view of reality hinges upon a basic concern. There is a great disaster that looms on the horizon for this province and for this country and I would go so far as to say for the free world, if there is not some restoration of basic belief in the need for a citizen to live within his or her means and earn his or her own material needs. There is a greater inequity over the horizon if government is not prepared to say that it will live within its means, it will spend no more than it has to and it will spend no more than it can afford.
The difference between members of my party and our friends in the third party is that there are certain things they say we can’t afford, especially in the areas of social service and social justice. I say to them there are some constants in Ontario society we can always afford, if we play our cards right: the decency and self-respect of our senior citizens; a fair break for our young people; the efficiency, equity and quality of our health care; the viability of our farming community and the justifiable secure income that community deserves. As long as I am Premier of this province and as long as my party discharges its responsibilities as even a minority government, these constants, these pillars of human decency and responsibility are not open to negotiation either in this Legislature or on the hustings of this province.
Let me get back to the differences between the Leader of the Opposition and myself. I think there is a tendency for any politician, when confronted with a problem, to offer up his own view of how that problem can be solved and, more often than not, his own view implicates himself or herself in the solving of that problem. That’s human nature. The people of Ontario and the people of Canada are tired of politicians who believe that their greatest responsibility is that of creating work for themselves. The people of Ontario believe that government must be affordable, that a society must live within its means, precisely so it can afford the very priorities to which I referred earlier.
My problem is with the position taken by the Leader of the Opposition and the ultimate problem that the people on Ontario will have with the cumulative effect of that position and the position which his party takes. Whether it is a pulp and paper strike in one part of the province, an education strike here in Metropolitan Toronto, a closing of a hospital, economic difficulties, Mr. Minister of Agriculture, perhaps in the dairy industry in eastern Ontario -- every issue that ever comes up is one which the Leader of the Opposition and the NDP would want to become directly involved in. That is part of their approach.
I suggest they would use compulsory settlements when they thought the companies were at fault in a strike.
Mr. Lewis: That’s not true.
Hon. Mr. Davis: One wonders what they would say if they felt the strikers were responsible for the particular situation.
Mr. Lewis: We would say so.
Mr. Yakabuski: You never have.
Mr. Lewis: We would say so.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I guess they would use mandatory purchase by government sources of any business operations that were facing impending failure.
I get the impression since this Legislature has resumed --
Mr. Cassidy: What about Minaki Lodge?
Hon. Mr. Bernier: What about it?
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- that there is no small business in Ontario, there is no strike, there is no problem too expensive for my friends in the official opposition to spend away through government intervention and the taxpayers’ money.
Mr. Deans: What does that mean?
Hon. Mr. Davis: You know what it means --
Mr. Deans: I don’t know.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- and you’re concerned about it.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: For example, let’s look at Bill 100.
Mr. Makarchuk: Hogwash.
Mr. Lewis: You are standing your ground, but it’s not as strong as it seems.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Despite the clearly established procedure set down in that legislation, Bill 100, who was the first to call for government intervention?
Mr. Lewis: To bring the parties together.
Mr. Deans: We were.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Who was the first in this Legislature to call upon the Minister of Education (Mr. Wells) to sidestep all of the procedures in that bill --
Mr. Lewis: Nonsense.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- for collective bargaining and ask to intervene? And I can recall the Leader of the Opposition saying “this is a time for political leadership.”
Mr. Deans: That’s right.
Mr. Lewis: We wanted to send them to Ottawa.
Hon. Mr. Davis: You know, I have to say that that is a very trite, unsubtle and, I think, hypocritical approach.
You know what the Leader of the Opposition is really saying; he is really saying he now knows that good as Bill 100 may be, through it, a problem exists in Metropolitan Toronto. He knows that there is not total support for the teaching profession.
Mr. Lewis: Of course not.
Hon. Mr. Davis: He knows that there are some who would like to see the teachers back at work. He is saying, or trying to say very simply to the people of Metropolitan Toronto, to the teachers that are involved in the dispute: “I want to be on both sides, so that no one is upset.”
Mr. Lewis: No, I just want to get it solved.
Hon. Mr. Davis: It’s exactly what he’s saying. It’s exactly what he’s saying.
Mr. Lewis: I’d just like to get it solved.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Of course, we’d all love to get it solved. And, of course, his trite phrase for a solution is, “Show political leadership.”
All I say to that is that it is hypocritical.
Mr. Lewis: Why?
Hon. Mr. Davis: Because he really doesn’t believe it --
Mr. Lewis: Of course I believe it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- and he knows that that sort of thing isn’t going to work.
Mr. Lewis: Of course I believe it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: You know, Mr. Speaker, the transformation that has taken place since Sept. 18 -- there is an element of consistency, an element of reality and an element of principle which has been lost by my friend, the Leader of the Opposition, and by those with whom he serves. I will not say that of my friends in the third party, because in the last campaign they were looking for matters of principle, and really couldn’t find them.
An hon. member: Still haven’t.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Well, they couldn’t.
Mr. Breithaupt: Get on with your speech.
Mr. Nixon: We had one million votes.
Hon. Mr. Davis: They couldn’t find them.
Mr. Nixon: More than we’ve ever had since 1937.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, what concerns me --
Mr. Nixon: We reduced your majority down to this. That’s our accomplishment. I am proud of it.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Mr. Nixon: I’m proud of it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: What concerns -- Oh, really?
Mr. Nixon: Go ahead; respond.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, what concerns me, and I’m saying this --
Mr. Nixon: Less than two percentage points behind you.
Mr. Speaker: Order.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- in a non-partisan fashion at the moment, is not that the Leader of the Opposition offers to solve every problem, but that the type of leadership which he wants to provide is the very same leadership that has gotten governments and economies in North America and beyond into so much difficulty.
I believe that society is prepared to learn. Society is prepared to moderate its demands of government, unless there are those committed to inflation and to creating those demands where they are often unnecessary or inappropriate.
We need only look at the records to see how the fundamental rigidity of our friends opposite in the opposition has affected their incapacity to share in tough decisions. That is true. In the Leader of the Opposition’s speech in this very same debate, he said with reference to the anti-inflation programme and I quote:
“I think the Province of Ontario embraced those wage-price guidelines with indecent haste, and it did so not out of patriotic motivation but out of simple, unadorned political motivations.”
Mr. Nixon: Right.
Mr. Deans: That’s right.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Everything we do is politically motivated; nothing they do is ever politically motivated.
Mr. Lewis: Certainly it is politically motivated.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I haven’t finished the quote yet: “This government was exceptionally relieved at the apparent initiatives that the federal government would take, particularly in the wage sector.” That is the end of his observations.
I won’t respond to the motives suggested by my friend the Leader of the Opposition. I say, with respect, there is a certain partisan puffery which I know he engages in in the best of faith. He does it --
Mr. Lewis: We all do it occasionally. Even you have tried it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Sure we do, and some do it better than others. I don’t deny that for a moment. I want to say this, that I have looked back a little bit, because I think we have to retain our perspective. It was some two years ago that this government and the Treasurer called upon the federal government for restraints; it has not been in the last three months or four months.
Some two years ago we began to call for less government spending, for guidelines and for some sort of restriction on an economy that was expanding at great social cost to every participant therein. Maybe even more directly, in July, 1974 -- we can recall that date -- a politician for whom I have very great respect, the Hon. Robert Stanfield, went to this country and asked for a mandate not only for a freeze on wages, not only for a freeze on salaries, but also a freeze on profits and dividends and prices. That was not that long ago. And what did the federal allies of my good friend the Leader of the Opposition do?
Mr. Breithaupt: What did you do?
Mr. Philip: You dissociated yourself.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I was on six platforms with that distinguished gentleman. I never hesitated, never hesitated.
Mr. Lewis: You dissociated yourself.
Hon. Mr. Davis: You know what your people did? They went around this country, they vilified the programme, they misrepresented it, they attacked it, and they achieved their results --
Mr. Lewis: You were asked in this House and you said you refused to take a position.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- mainly the re-election of the Liberal Party in Canada --
Mr. Lewis: Right, right.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- and the defeat of a man who offered the only honest alternative to a nation that needed an alternative then and still does today.
Mr. Breithaupt: Why don’t you run for it?
Hon. Mr. Davis: In the process, Mr. Speaker, do you know something?
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. The Premier has the floor.
Hon. Mr. Davis: The member for wherever -- I haven’t got all the names straight -- York South; he’s a great historian. We can learn a lot from history; I’ve always believed that.
Mr. MacDonald: You are rewriting history with hindsight.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Oh no, I am not rewriting with hindsight at all. Some of us saw a little bit further ahead than the member for York South, and it hurts a little bit. It hurts a little bit. It hurts. Not only did you re-elect the Liberal Party, you did some slight damage to the New Democratic Party in the process.
Mr. Cassidy: We are like the Phoenix.
Mr. Lewis: And almost finished the Tories.
Hon. Mr. Davis: And now, Mr. Speaker, with obviously -- and I use his quote -- “unadorned political motivations” in mind, the Leader of the Opposition calls on this government to set up its own provincial board for wage and price guidelines; no political motivation.
Mr. Lewis: Yes, they are political motivations.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Of a partisan nature?
Mr. Lewis: Of course.
Hon. Mr. Davis: But the reality is --
Mr. Sargent: Time, time.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, I have to say to the member for Grey-Bruce, when I heard him say, “Time, time,” the ice is available at Maple Leaf Gardens and he can call “time” there just as many times as he wants. I tell you, he performs very well on the ice. If he performed as well here as he does on skates he would be a tremendous politician.
Mr. Conway: You are on thin ice.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Taking into account his maturity, he performs very well. The reality is that for this government to acquiesce in the creation of a provincial board would be tantamount to Ontario doing what it could to destroy the national programme. I only wish the member for Sarnia (Mr. Bullbrook) were here because I think it’s important there be an understanding.
Mr. Mancini: If he were you’d be in trouble.
Hon. Mr. Davis: While we regret that it has come very late --
Mr. Lewis: He’s looking after his constituents.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Yes, looking after his constituents -- we nevertheless were and are prepared to support it because support it every Canadian must.
It is in this respect that I want to take issue with one statement made by the Leader of the Opposition during his intervention in this debate. He said, while referring to my government:
“The people over there on that side of the House are so easy with their inequities. They are so ready to tolerate inequity. In my book [he went on to say] inequity means injustice and I want to know what redefinition of the political process they are about.”
He will recall those words. He went on to say later in reference to my party:
“It [the Tory party] never understood how profoundly unfair is the way in which this economic order works and it is now prepared to reinforce all of that unfairness that is consummate in the guidelines presented by Pierre Elliot Trudeau.”
I say, as directly as I can to the Leader of the Opposition, that if he believes the path to political success for him and his colleagues is that of claiming a monopoly on compassion --
Mr. Lewis: Of course not.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- a monopoly on concern for the human condition --
Mr. MacDonald: You’re setting up a straw man.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- through some unique right to self-righteousness --
Mr. Lewis: We were talking about wage inequities.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- when his day in court comes, he and his party will be laughed out of the court by the people of this province, because it is not confined to him or those who support him.
Mr. Lewis: No one ever suggested that.
Hon. Mr. Davis: The day of the self-righteous versus the wicked are over in terms of real politics. The days of simple black and white choices are even more remote.
Mr. Lewis: Deal with the wage inequities.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Don’t tell us that we support inequities.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Mr. Lewis: You support an economic system which is profoundly unjust. It is a matter of ideology not of compassion. You support an economic system which doesn’t work fairly.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I think the voter has learned to beware of the man who claims that only he cares, and to beware of the political party that claims a monopoly on caring.
Mr. MacDonald: Don’t beat the straw man too long.
Hon. Mr. Davis: There are no more monopolies in the politics of Ontario and I am the first to admit it. There aren’t any. That is because the people want answers. They want them clear.
Mr. Lewis: That’s right.
Hon. Mr. Davis: They want them definitive and they want them honest. Notice I say the people want answers. I think they’re tired of promises from federal, provincial and municipal politicians. When government is elected through the litany of promises, when it becomes the only secure sector of society because it tends to feed upon itself -- as would a government that engages in all the activities my friends opposite would have us engage in -- then the greatest inequity in a free society would be the inequity between the government and the people it seeks to serve. That is the most fundamental inequity in a free society today. That is the inequity the people associated with my party and my government will just not tolerate.
This brings me to the amendment offered by our friends in the third party. This Legislature is in something of an interesting dilemma. We have an amendment to the Speech from the Throne which is, traditionally and by precedent, a motion of non-confidence in the administration.
Mr. Deans: I am not sure about that. I am not sure that is true.
Hon. Mr. Bernier: It is true.
Hon. Mr. Davis: The Speech from the Throne as it was presented represents a clear and concise programme relative to the anti-inflation measures adopted by the federal government and the programmes which this government is duty-bound to see put into effect during this session. It was a short Throne Speech. It was concise. It was relatively definitive. I know; I have been involved in some of these for a period of time.
While the Leader of the Opposition claims that it is not a motion of confidence and therefore he can vote for it because he believes in some sort of provincial board his friend, the leader of the third party says it is indeed a vote of non-confidence and that is precisely why he is voting for it.
Mr. Lewis: It probably is non-confidence.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I think this is really the way the situation rests. One thing at least should be clear. In putting forward his motion, the member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk must want an election now in Ontario. That is the only simple conclusion that one can draw.
Mr. Conway: Baloney.
Hon. Mr. Davis: It’s the only simple conclusion.
Mr. Sweeney: We want you to accept your responsibility.
Hon. Mr. Davis: That would be the hon. member’s Christmas present to the people of Ontario.
Mr. Ruston: Hold it on Jan. 22.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Do you really want to give them that kind of a Christmas present?
Mr. Breithaupt: Get some metal stakes.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I wonder if that is the position? I am sorry the member for London North (Mr. Shore) has gone because I don’t think it is his.
Mr. Conway: You can do what Bob Stanfield did in February, 1968.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I wonder if that is the position of those who share his caucus with him. I look to some of the new members on the back benches.
Mr. Breithaupt: They will be back.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Or of those who might be seeking the leadership of his party at the end of January. We are not playing games in this House and you might as well know it.
Mr. MacDonald: Talk about self-righteous.
Hon. Mr. Davis: No, we are not. You might as well know it.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: We take this seriously.
Mr. Lewis: So do we. That is why we have not moved an amendment yet.
Hon. Mr. Davis: That is why you have to be very careful.
Nonetheless, the member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk has put a non-confidence motion before this House and he has said it is non-confidence and that is why he is voting for it.
There is some talk about the Grinch who stole Christmas the member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk can make his own assessment and the people of Ontario, of course, would have to make theirs. When we talk about decision and when we talk about political leadership -- and I think it is a valid thing to talk about --
Mr. Lewis: It is not a trite phrase? How do you like that? In 15 minutes it became a valid thing to talk about.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Only when you use it 90 per cent of the time.
Mr. Lewis: It has to have that righteousness when you use it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: When we talk about the capacity to govern and we talk about courage and about being clear and concise and offering the people of Ontario options, we must take a moment to reflect upon the stand of my friend, the Leader of the Opposition, on that same amendment. His stand is very clear. He is in favour of the amendment.
Mr. Lewis: In favour of the position it takes, yes.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I see. In favour of the position it takes. He ignores, perhaps -- maybe he doesn’t -- the weight of parliamentary tradition which suggests that it is a vote of non-confidence. He says he and his colleagues are thinking of voting for it because they agree with it in substance.
Mr. Lewis: That’s right.
Hon. Mr. Davis: They really want to carry their flag but they are wearing a blindfold in the process. I say that very respectfully.
Mr. Lewis: No. Do you want the people of Ontario to have an election for a Christmas present?
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: No. I think it would be the height of folly and if it happens it will be on your head, across the House.
Mr. Lewis: It may not happen in that case. You have to be careful.
Hon. Mr. Davis: The Leader of the Opposition wants to get his views on the record and wants to take a strong stand but would not like to face the consequence. Let me say this --
Mr. Lewis: Don’t provoke us; you might lose.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Who knows? I want to make it clear though, so there is no misunderstanding either across there or up there --
Mr. Conway: That’s the grandstand over there.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- our party does not want an election. This government --
Mr. Riddell: That’s not what you told me yesterday.
Mr. Sweeney: Assume your responsibilities to govern this province.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Fine, you go ahead and vote for that amendment. Tell the people in your riding you are campaigning on the basis of not really wanting to deal with inflation on the fiction of a provincial rather than a federal board.
Mr. Sweeney: Right, wrap up.
Hon. Mr. Davis: You know what will happen to you? You will be out; and you know why, you know why.
Mr. Sweeney: We want to deal with it here, not out there!
Mr. Lewis: That’s probably the strongest platform in Ontario.
Hon. Mr. Davis: No, it really is not.
Hon. Mr. Davis: But you know they introduced that amendment -- you people.
Mr. Sweeney: Right.
Mr. Nixon: And we are going to vote for it too.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Oh, I am sure. Think carefully, think very carefully. My view is simply this --
Hon. Mr. Rhodes: Nixon wants to be leader again.
An hon. member: That’s the motivation.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I would say to my very good friend and colleague the Minister of Housing that I don’t disagree with him ever, except when it comes to a certain football team, but I would have to say that I really don’t believe the member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk wants to stay as leader of that party.
Mr. Breithaupt: We’ll run the risk, you will see; we will run the risk.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I don’t think he does. I would make this observation: He could compete admirably with those who are presently on the list. I say that with great affection.
Mr. Sargent: That’s the kiss of death from you!
Hon. Mr. Davis: No, no, listen; the member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk and I have had our differences and I regret them. I don’t like that sort of thing, but if you want to ask me, yes, I would say he would do very well with the group who are presently in the leadership contest of your party. To the member from Grey-Bruce, if you are in it, he would beat you three to one, four to one, five to one --
Mr. Kennedy: And no overtime.
Mr. Eakins: He could do well federally too.
Mr. Sweeney: Only 44 votes got your leadership.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I don’t want to get back to those historic days, because I would embarrass your leader a bit if I were to go through the process that he went through, because he had an even more difficult time at his second coming as leader of that party.
Mr. Sweeney: Only 44 votes.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Oh, yes he did. You are embarrassing your leader, now don’t.
Hon. Mr. Davis: However, to get back to that which is relevant, this government, as is the case with every member of this Legislature, was elected to govern. I believe the people feel this.
Mr. Deans: Well, do it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: They were elected not to posture, not to threaten election campaigns at Christmas time.
Mr. Breithaupt: After an hour of this?
Hon. Mr. Davis: Not to challenge the political security of this province but to govern.
Hon. Mr. Davis: All right, your amendment, in my view, is political posturing and nothing more, nothing more. Sure it is.
Mr. Ruston: I suppose the Premier is not posturing?
Hon. Mr. Davis: That’s why we are here. That is the right which we sought from the people on Sept. 18 and as long as it is that mandate we intend to discharge it for as long as we are able to do so; that is my very firm intent.
There will be no provincial anti-inflation board in Ontario because that would destroy the national anti-inflation programme in Ontario, and we believe that as sincerely as you may believe you believe what you said just two or three weeks ago.
That’s what upset me a little bit about the member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk in his observations -- and I just put this in by way of interjection: He seems to feel that when he presents his views to the House that they are pure, that they are sincerely held, and when we happen to have conflicting or opposing points of view, they are totally politically motivated. I say to him very simply, that just isn’t so. We believe what we believe every bit as sincerely as you people do on all of these important issues.
Mr. Speaker, any resolution of this House that forced an anti-inflation board -- either morally or politically -- upon this administration, gets to the very essence of what this government stands for and the need for national economic leadership in this country. So, the people in the dilemma, Mr. Speaker -- because I don’t think they are going to change what I think is a very questionable amendment. I think it is political posturing. I doubt that your caucus really sensed what they were doing when it was agreed to, if it was, but I would urge you to withdraw it. However, I sense that human nature being what it is, you won’t have the wisdom to do so --
Hon. Mr. Davis: You won’t but you should -- and I say this very sincerely --
Hon. Mr. Davis: I have to tell you now; I will be, and this government will be, voting against the amendment put by the member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk.
Hon. Mr. Davis: We intend to vote against it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: This government views that amendment -- and I want you to hear this -- and the irresponsibility that it typifies, as an expression of non-confidence. It would then put us in a very difficult position of having to make that choice. I say to the leader of the Liberal Party of Ontario, is he really saying to the people of Ontario he wants an election at Christmas in 1975 or the early part of 1976?
Mr. Breithaupt: Happy new year.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Is that really what he is saying?
Mr. Nixon: I was first elected Jan. 18. It is a great time to campaign.
An hon. member: Good.
Hon. Mr. Davis: Is it really what he is saying? I would want to say to you, Mr. Speaker, that if that should happen, there will be some explaining to do.
Hon. Mr. Davis: When our friends opposite and our friends in the third party passed the fundamental motion of confidence, which is the motion of supply which gives Her Majesty, in the right of this government --
An hon. member: We didn’t vote for that.
Hon. Mr. Davis: The members apposite most certainly did; the right to spend --
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: A few days after that the basic motion of confidence was passed. Some members opposite weren’t even here when those moneys were approved. Having passed that, then a few days later to vote non-confidence in the government I think there would have to be some tall explaining done by the members opposite in the House.
But our position is clear for those who care and for those who are interested to know. We are here to govern, through difficult times and, hopefully, on to better times. We are here to provide economic leadership through an example of restraint, to keep taxes down and to stimulate greater growth on the part of our economy. We are here, Mr. Speaker, to ensure that governments across Canada are prepared to stay within the boundaries that are dictated by the reality of our economy, so that we can conserve and build --
Mr. Sargent: You have no choice. You can’t borrow any more money, that’s why.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- the wealth upon which our society can continue to grow and continue to prosper.
We are here to protect the economic wellbeing and the jobs of the working men and women of Ontario and to ensure, through programmes of this government, through planning in the future with respect specifically to Ontario’s labour and employment needs, through careful municipal planning, through fair and equitable tax base distribution, that this province, indeed, remains a province of opportunity.
As long as this Legislature continues to function in a fashion that does not allow the distortion of the public will of this province or of the public interest, as long as we are permitted as a government to fight for society within which people spend only what they can afford, can get only what they earn, then there will be no need for an election in this province.
As long as there is a sense of reality, a sense of perspective in what this Legislature says and does relative to the real capacity of government to solve problems, then there will be no need for an election.
As long as the capacity of this government to govern is not challenged by the misdirected will of the Legislature that forces it to consider breaking away from the fundamental principle of an affordable society, then there will be need for an election. But if we are ever asked or forced by the opposition in cooperation with the third party to move away from that principle of an affordable society, to embark upon programmes that would destroy equity within our economy, balance within our way of life and the prior concern for productivity and fairness, the priority concern for these which must dominate social progress in Ontario, then I say very simply there will be every need for an election in this province.
I say to my friends in the third party -- and I like to think that there are still a few over there -- that from their vantage point at the far end of the spectrum they really hold a certain balance of power in this House.
Mr. Mancini: Somebody better.
Hon. Mr. Davis: They have to make a decision about what side of the spectrum they sit on. They will have to decide if, in bringing down this government, they wish to do so in support of or helped by the opposition.
Mr. Breithaupt: A meeting of the Social Credit League will be held this afternoon.
Mr. Lewis: Those are very portentous statements you are now making. Mystery is ringing in the chamber. You would think an election was coming.
Mr. Singer: A divine right to rule is pretty important.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I say to them that as long as we continue to maintain the same standards of social justice, the same standards of human decency in Ontario towards our senior citizens --
An hon. member: You don’t know what the word means.
Mr. Speaker: Order please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- towards those who are genuinely in need, towards our young people and towards every sector of this society, then there will be no need for an election,
Mr. Lewis: What is all this?
Mr. Deans: What are you saying?
Hon. Mr. Davis: But when an irrational and deep-rooted reactionary posture is pushed upon this government by an irresponsible Legislature --
Mr. Singer: Be careful, you’re going to drive them away from you in a minute.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- there will be no doubt in our minds who will have offered that proposition.
Hon. Mr. Davis: And there will be no doubt in our minds upon the need.
In closing, Mr. Speaker --
An hon. member: Hurrah!
Hon. Mr. Davis: Oh, I’m sure you’re delighted.
Mr. McNeil: They are overanxious.
Hon. Mr. Davis: May I leave you, sir, and members of the Legislature and my colleagues with one final thought.
Mr. Lewis: Just a veiled threat.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I know some of the thoughts I’ve expressed disturb you, but I don’t feel badly. It won’t hurt you to be disturbed now and then.
Mr. Deans: I don’t understand what you’re saying.
Hon. Mr. Davis: This Legislature is the heart of the governing process in this province right here. It is the forum within which we are all capable of great maturity or immaturity.
Mr. Cassidy: It’s a great place. You’re doing your best to destroy it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: It is a forum where, quite properly, differing views are reconciled, different interests are represented and different ideas are discussed, digested and hopefully put into law.
Mr. Lewis: Whose hand trembled on the page when those words were written?
Hon. Mr. Davis: There is no unwillingness on the part of my government to work with every responsible member of this Legislature to improve legislation and to ensure fairness, justice and equity.
Mr. Cassidy: You wouldn’t have said that before Sept. 18.
Hon. Mr. Davis: But this House can’t cut itself off from the outside world either.
Mr. Cassidy: You didn’t believe in this place before Sept 18.
Hon. Mr. Davis: We can’t cut ourselves off from the reality of labour disputes. We cannot ignore the fact of falling productivity and of economic difficulty or social injustice.
Mr. Breithaupt: Who wrote that?
Mr. Cassidy: You were trying to destroy this place before the election.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: We cannot ignore a growing feeling on the part of many, and perhaps the majority, that government must provide leadership in the recognition of our fundamental economic reality and circumstance.
Mr. Singer: And we Tories have a divine right to rule.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I did not enter public life or politics to build false hopes or to offer false promises or compromise principle --
Mr. Mancini: Only by accident.
Mr. Lewis: You sound more self-righteous than I do, and that’s difficult to do. You sound it now.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I could never be more self-righteous than the Leader of the Opposition. I couldn’t; I’m not that kind of person.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I am not prepared to compromise some principle merely to survive, much as I like what I’m doing.
Mr. Singer: Oh, no!
Hon. Mr. Davis: Survival of the government is important because we have a duty and a mandate to govern and, secondly, because the people expect a reasonable period of effective leadership from this Legislature and the government.
Mr. Cassidy: Are we meant to read this speech between the lines?
Hon. Mr. Davis: But they also expect a reasonable government. They expect realistic assessments of where we’re going, and they expect a government that is prepared to make tough decisions on spending and on taxes so that our society can remain solvent.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I hope you’re listening.
Mr. Sargent: He’s a good reader.
Mr. Warner: He’s going to read it over again.
Hon. Mr. Davis: As long as the Legislature of this province allows this government to exercise that responsibility I believe -- and I believe this very sincerely --
Mr. Cassidy: You went through that bit.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- that this Legislature can continue to govern and I think it can govern well.
Mr. Lewis: Is this a plea?
Hon. Mr. Davis: But that is not my decision to make, nor is it that of my colleagues.
Mr. Lewis: Virtue has its own rewards.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: It is the decision to be made, Mr. Speaker, by the two parties opposite.
Mr. Lewis: Oh, yes.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I ask that in their deliberations over the next --
Mr. MacDonald: You want an election and you know it.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- three or four days --
Mr. Lewis: Everyone knows an election is coming.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- that in their deliberations and in their decisions, they are aware of one other fundamental reality.
Mr. Lewis: The spectre is looming.
Hon. Mr. Davis: That is that my party and government are prepared to govern because we are also prepared to fight for that right to govern.
Hon. Mr. Davis: And I hope you across the House will never forget it.
Mr. Warner: And you’ll call the election on April Fool’s Day.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: We are prepared to govern because difficult times require stable and strong leadership.
Mr. Lewis: Strong leadership?
Hon. Mr. Davis: And that’s why I say firstly to the member for Brant-Oxford-Norfolk, please assess carefully the posture you are adopting on the amendment to the Throne Speech. It is irresponsible. It doesn’t make any sense; the people of Ontario do not want an election at this time.
Mr. Deans: Sure they do.
Hon. Mr. Davis: I say to the Leader of the Opposition and his loyal supporters --
Mr. Lewis: Think carefully whether we want an election now.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- that when this vote is called --
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- I hope he recognizes his responsibility and fails to support the amendment from the third party in this House --
Mr. Lewis: We might even move our own.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- recognizing that we were elected to govern and we are doing it rather well and it can continue for some period of time. If it does not, I want to make it very clear --
Mr. Singer: Then we will have an election.
Mr. Cassidy: You should have been here yesterday afternoon.
Hon. Mr. Davis: -- it is on the heads of the members in the opposition of the Legislature of this province and don’t forget it on Wednesday next.
Mr. Lewis: Did I understand you correctly? Did you say if you were defeated you would have an election, and if you weren’t defeated ow wouldn’t have an election?
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. The debate is over.
Mr. Lewis: We will have a caucus this afternoon and try to work it through.
Mr. Speaker: Thank you. Now would you give attention to the member for High Park-Swansea?
Mr. Ziemba: I was pleased to give up my turn in the Throne debate to allow the Premier (Mr. Davis) to deliver his speech --
Mr. Lewis: I enjoyed the first part.
Mr. Speaker: Order, please. The hon. member for High Park-Swansea is making his remarks; thank you.
Mr. Ziemba: I must say I did find the Premier’s speech interesting and, yes, I found it amusing. I couldn’t help feeling that Dr. Seuss played a part in writing it.
Mr. Lewis: The Grinch stealing Christmas.
Mr. Ziemba: Yes. I would like to welcome again many of my supporters to hear my speech. I am going to ask them to try to restrain themselves. I received a note late last night from the Speaker of the House and pinned to the note was the notice of my speech.
It was suggested that after the session adjourned the visitors demonstrate outside this chamber; it was signed by two members of the CTC. I would ask those visitors not to demonstrate in the House; it’s against the rules of the House. The Speaker has informed me of this and I would suggest that perhaps they demonstrate outside the building, where we’ve had many interesting demonstrations lately. I’m sure they will all co-operate. The leaders of the various residents’ and ratepayers’ groups will be meeting with the press in the media room, which is a very small room that wouldn’t be able to contain all the visitors. I don’t think there should be a problem there.
I’ve also promised the Speaker that if there are any disruptions in the House, I will terminate my speech -- and I do want to continue with my speech. I think it’s something that is worth putting on the public record, so I’ll ask again that there be no further disruptions.
I would like to make one quick comment. I see the Attorney General (Mr. McMurtry) is still in his seat. It is in regard to his statement last night about his concern with and his proposal to raise the drinking age. I believe he showed considerable resolve and courage in making that statement and I congratulate him.
Mr. Speaker, I have described my riding and the constituents to you. So many of the communities affected by the Highway 400 extension are irreplaceable, sir, especially for older people whose English is poor and whose whole enjoyment of life comes from the ethnic church, the local stores and familiar neighbours. These people often have had many upheavals in their lives. They often have been closer than they would have chosen to be, to history in the making. Can we, in all humility ask them to face another upheaval and yet another move to a strange community?
The following is from “400 Update,” and it has to do with emotional suffering:
“The problems faced by the uprooted homeowner, other than the chances of finding new and similar housing, are being increasingly stressed in expressway studies. The psychological effects of displacement have been dwelt with before, for instance by Marc Fried. He found that forced relocation is a highly disruptive and disturbing experience and a crisis with potential danger to mental health for many people.
“While middle-class and upper-class groups may view expropriation as an annoyance, immigrant and working-class groups who have worked hard to own their homes, and especially those who may have lived in the same house for many years, are faced with severe hardships. The intangible aspects of ‘neighbourhood’ are vital to these people and may be lost through relocation. For some, adapting to a new neighbourhood, new transit, possibly a new job and a new home, all at once, can lead to prolonged depression. These difficulties, not dealt with when adequate compensation for displacement is being determined, are more crucial than money. Considering the working-class and ethnic nature of much of the area of the 400 extension, the problem would likely be a large one and should be an important factor in deciding whether or not to build the expressway.”
Even those who remained in what was left of their community would face severe problems and stress. Again, I quote from “400 Update”:
“Value of Remaining Homes: The effect of the extension on the salability of the houses which remain standing after the expressway is completed is another unclear proposition. Much depends on how the land is zoned after completion. For most people, the quality of life near an expressway would be poor, and if the area continues to be residential, the value of homes nearest the expressway would drop. The further away, the higher the price but, overall, prices would be lower. However, if the land was rezoned as industrial because of easy access to an expressway, the value of a home on this land would increase (strictly because of the land, not the building itself). This would of course begin the displacement problems all over again. At the point where residential land resumed, the price of a home would likely be lower than before.
“Pressures for Redevelopment: Land which becomes more accessible usually becomes subject to pressures for redevelopment. Different types of uses, such as high-density residential, business and industrial will pay for the privilege of locating near an expressway (especially near interchanges) or subway. Such was the case with the Bloor-Danforth subway and the Don Valley Parkway. Both high-density residences and industry moved in close to these facilities. It is likely that the 400 area would experience similar attempts by industrial or high-density developers to move in the area. While such attempts might result in higher values for homes sold, the remaining residents would receive no similar benefit and possibly some harm due to the mixing of incompatible land uses. Zoning restrictions would be necessary to control such possibilities.”
Exposure to pollution, both air and noise, could reach levels dangerous to health.
I quote now from a brief prepared by the coalition against the Highway 400 extension for the Metropolitan Toronto Transportation Review:
“Let’s examine this kind of pollution, which might be called physical pollution as opposed to social pollution, in as far as they can be separated from each other. The effects of these pollutants of air and ear can be modified by construction techniques, but only slightly -- never satisfactorily.
“As two American authorities recently noted ‘the automobile represents the most significant single source of air pollution in the United States today.’ The idea that expressways reduce air pollution is now known to be untrue. As speed increases to 30 miles per hour, carbon monoxide emissions decrease 40 per cent, and at speeds over 30 miles per hour, they begin to increase again until, at speeds of 70 miles per hour, approximately twice the quantity of carbon monoxide is produced as was at 20 miles per hour. Hydrocarbon emissions change very little with speed, and nitrogen oxide emissions increase drastically with speed, smooth-flowing traffic at 60 miles per hour emitting nine times the amount of nitrogen oxide of traffic travelling at 20 miles per hour. Emission of lead into the atmosphere also increases with speed.
“Carbon monoxide slows down the delivery of oxygen to the body tissues. In low concentrations, it brings on headaches. In high dosages, it kills.
“Nitrogen oxide reduces the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood, and in higher dosages can restrict breathing.
“Hydrocarbons, when combined with nitrogen oxide, produce ozone -- or as it is sometimes called, ‘petrochemical smog’ -- which is extremely dangerous to plant life.
“And evidence suggests that these effects are more than doubled when traffic doubles. One hundred cars probably cause more than twice the damage of 50 cars, since the mixing of exhaust fumes can produce additional contaminants beyond those already emitted.
“Obviously, a high-speed expressway increases air pollutants and the greater volume that it carries increases the danger of such pollutants.
“When an expressway is planned to go through a heavily populated urban area, the health hazard to the residents of nearby neighbourhoods should be considered to more than offset the slight increase in convenience to car and truck users in the suburbs.
“Some people still believe that an expressway would decrease noise, especially noise from big trucks. On the contrary, at speeds over 30 miles per hour, wind and fire noises are greater than engine, exhaust and transmission noises. It has been suggested that ‘the noise problem could be aided by the construction of freeways with low speed limits.’ It is likely that, as with air pollution, noise pollution will increase disproportionately with traffic volume, for with more vehicles on the road, accelerating and decelerating, entering and leaving, and changing lanes, there will be an increase in transmission, braking and horn noises.”
I just received a note from the Stop 400 group, and they say:
“It’s our understanding that security was ordered to stop anyone involved in the Stop 400 or Spadina groups from entering the building and that they have cleared us from the public gallery. Any 400 person is not being allowed into the gallery. Can they do this, and can you raise the issue?”
Well, I just have. Can I ask the Speaker to rule on that?
Hon. J. R. Smith: There is a policy for demonstrators.
Mr. Ziemba: I’ve made it clear to them that there should be no disruptions. I’m sure they wouldn’t, Mr. Speaker.
Mr. Speaker: I am not aware of any instructions given; but I will check into it.
Mr. Ziemba: Thank you.
Mr. Cassidy: On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, I have just been talking with some people who were being turned away, and was with them when they were being turned away from this gallery right here. I’ve also just spoken with one of the senior security people who said that they had specific instructions to allow in only people from the Premier’s (Mr. Davis) party, and then from the member for High Park-Swansea’s party.
Hon. J. R. Smith: Nonsense.
Mr. Cassidy: Their instructions were in fact positive to permit people who came from -- who wanted to hear the Premier speak; and then to permit people in who wanted to hear Mr. Ziemba speak. There’s been at least some confusion.
If people are being turned away, it is quite unjustified. It seems to me that instructions should go out immediately to the security people to permit these people in.
Mr. Speaker: Will the hon. member continue and, as I said previously, I will check into it?
Mr. Ziemba: Right now? I would like to have a ruling on that now.
Mr. Speaker: As I said, I am not aware of any instructions given from Mr. Speaker Rowe to the security people about any group that wouldn’t be allowed in. If the hon. member wishes to continue, I will check further with Mr. Speaker Rowe.
Mr. Ziemba: I am going to call for a quorum.
Mr. Speaker ordered that the bells be rung for four minutes.
Mr. Speaker: Before the member resumes, I’m advised that there were no instructions given by Mr. Speaker Rowe to the security guards to keep anyone from entering the Legislature. There could have been some misunderstanding in that the gallery was full during the previous speaker’s Throne debate and there may have been some confusion asking them to refrain from coming in until the other guests had left the assembly. However, there has been no such order given and instructions have been given to the security guards to allow anyone wanting to come in to enter, and as long as seats are available they may do so. The hon. member will continue.
Mr. Ziemba: Thank you, Mr. Speaker, I would just like to point out that it is our understanding that the security force was ordered to stop anyone involved in the Stop 400 or Stop Spadina groups from entering the public galleries. Obviously, some people were here in the public galleries and they have been cleared, and other people were asked, I guess, who they represented and when it was found out they were either with the Stop 400 and the Stop Spadina group they were obviously discriminated against. I would be interested to know how this can be. Do you have to identify yourself as a Tory supporter before you’re allowed in the gallery?
Mr. Speaker: Order, please.
Mr. Lupusella: That’s what this is all about.
Mr. Ziemba: I’m again going to caution the visitors who are here at this time not to disrupt this debate. I’ll terminate my speech if it is disrupted.
Hon. Mr. Parrott: I think your chances are pretty good of that happening. They won’t interrupt too much.
Mr. Ziemba: I think it will be a good time if everyone restrains himself.
Mr. Speaker, traffic noise is one of the greatest sources of annoyance to people living in the city, and freeways and expressways result in an increase in the level of traffic noise within the city. Anyone living near Highway 401 can testify to the horrifying increase in noise the expressway has created. In our own area, the traffic noise from the Gardiner Expressway is clearly heard on Grenadier Pond, for instance, a location some hundreds of yards away. Tests by the Ministry of Transportation and Communications with several types of noise barriers along the Don Valley Parkway have not been successful. The only solution for those near an expressway is to put up with the noise or sell -- if they can find a buyer.
Noise is usually measured in decibels. It is widely agreed that levels at or above 85 db are dangerous and that prolonged exposure to such high levels for several hours a day can lead to 15 db hearing loss in two to four times as many people as would show such a loss in the absence of such noise. A group of four passenger cars -- this is important -- travelling at 50 to 59 mph close together will, on the average, produce levels of noise at 84 db or more, while such groups of trucks will produce levels of 93 db.
If the expressway is used as a truck route, the noise level would be on the high side of the danger level for much of the time. After 10 years of exposure to such noise levels, at least 50 per cent will have n hearing impairment of six decibels and at least 25 per cent an impairment of 15 db. High noise levels, such as would be found all along the expressway route, have also been found to affect blood, heart, eyes, skin and stomach. Which would be more dangerous to those in our neighbourhoods, noise or the air pollution from the expressway, would depend on the individual and his medical condition. Certainly, the effect on nearby schools and hospitals would be particularly alarming.
I’m going to read an article from the Toronto Star:
“Monoxide Could Kill Up to Three Per Cent, U.S. Told
“Washington: Carbon monoxide has so saturated the blood of Americans that nearly half of all non-smokers have more of it in their systems than federal safety standards would permit.
“Smokers have two to four times more.
“These are among findings disclosed yesterday from a federally-sponsored survey of 29,000 people in 18 areas, including the largest US cities. The survey was taken from 1969 to 1972.
“The results provide one of the greatest pictures yet of America’s air pollution.
“The average non-smoker’s carbon monoxide level in the blood, the study showed, was so high that it could threaten the lives of one to three per cent of the population. In people with advanced heart or blood-vessel diseases or in the aged or in some infants, carbon monoxide may cause ‘untoward effects they can’t tolerate’ said Dr. Richard Stewart, the main author of the report.”
Why is this road being bulldozed through against the wishes of the residents of the west end of Metro? Is there any reason for its extension? Is it a necessary road? After all, we believe that it will cost $85 million in 1975 dollars, so is it a road anybody wants?
The answer is no. Even the most enthusiastic of the planners -- and they are the people we hire to give us the benefit of their education in these matters -- so as I say the most enthusiastic of these planners, even Mr. Richard Soberman, is definitely lukewarm.
Let me quote from the Soberman report. I am just going to quote a bit of it here. It is report 64, January, 1975, regarding Highway 400 extension:
“Of the expressways proposed in the 1966 plan, the Highway 400 extension is the one major expressway facility on which no final decision has yet been taken. [This was before the government had gone ahead and decided.] Cancellation of the Spadina Expressway placed additional pressures on the existing road system in northwest Metro, south of Highway 401. The pattern of employment and population distribution in the northwest, travel characteristics in this area and the presence of heavy trucking movements, all point to the need for some improvement in the road system.
“Extending Highway 400 to meet the Gardiner Expressway represents one alternative for providing these improvements which will have to be analysed in relation to other possibilities, such as the expansion of existing arterial roads. The cost of a Highway 400 extension in terms of community impact would certainly be high, and more effective means of compensating adversely affected residents would have to be explored in great detail before a firm decision can be made.”
This is the citizen whom we are always talking about, Soberman, suggesting a neighbourhood impact study.
“Some possibilities do exist for selecting a route which will minimize community impact by combining portions of it within the confines of existing rail corridors. Community opposition to construction of an expressway in this area is likely to be as strong as any of all the major expressway proposals which Metro has considered in the past. [I suggest that this is an understatement.]
“The Highway 400 extension is considered in detail in report 44 of the transportation plan review and given further consideration in the following section on special problems of the northwest. While it does not appear in any of the preferred combinations of land use and transportation systems, those preferred combinations all imply major deficiencies in road capacity in northwest Metro, more so than anywhere else in Metro Toronto. The Highway 400 extension represents one, but not necessarily the best option for dealing with these deficiencies. [He is not sold on it. Its construction, however, would not be inconsistent.
“At this time, there is really insufficient information to take a meaningful decision on either the Highway 400 extension or other major road improvement possibilities in the northwest. In the case of Highway 400, a decision to proceed with that facility would be meaningless until detailed engineering studies have been carried out and the role of the facility and the nature of the impact had been evaluated.”
There you go, Mr. Speaker. The planning staff of the city of Toronto was requested to do an analysis of the effect of Soberman’s report 64 on the city of Toronto by the planning board. Their analysis is extremely critical of both the statistical background and the conclusions drawn by the Soberman report, conclusions which were, remember, lukewarm to begin with.
I am going to read the arterial roads and other improvements by the Metropolitan Toronto transportation plan review:
“MTTPR report 64 suggests that the only realistic alternative to the construction of a major expressway or reducing road deficiencies in the northwest would involve construction and reconstruction of major arterial roads, and includes the extension of Highway 400 as an arterial road through the provincially-protected right-of-way to Keele, and then south on Keele by eliminating the discontinuity which presently exists between Rogers Rd. and St. Clair. In addition the Spadina Expressway can also be extended as an arterial road south of Lawrence to Eglinton where single-lane ramps could be provided to accommodate both east and westbound movements.
“Of critical importance in evaluating the relative merits of the arterial read option vis-à-vis the expressway option, is the fundamental distinction between arterial roads and expressways. The essence of the nature of expressways is contained in the earlier nomenclature limited access highways. Expressways typically have few access points and no at-grade intersections. Must cross streets are dead-ended at the expressway while the roads which do cross the expressway do so at a different level, i.e., via an overpass or underpass. In contrast, arterial roads typically afford access at every block with all the cross streets intersecting at grade.
“Consequently, the performance characteristics of expressways and arterial roads are also different. Expressways are designed to permit free-flowing, moderate-to-high-speed traffic movement, but restrict access to a limited number of modes and generally present a fairly formidable barrier to cross-traffic. On the other hand, traffic flow on arterial roads may be frequently interrupted and overall speeds are lower than on expressways. However, there is generally almost continuous access over the length of the arterial road and the harrier presented to cross-traffic is considerably less than that presented by expressways.
“The 400 arterial: The extension of Highway 400 as an arterial road appears to be an essential component of the arterial road option contained in recommendation 40 of MTTPR report 64. The suggested alignment is through the provincially-protected right of way to Keele, and then south on Keele by eliminating the discontinuity which presently exists between Rogers Rd. and St. Clair. However, as there are no details presented on the physical design of the facility it is difficult to ascertain, at this time, whether the proposal is for a conventional arterial road or for some form of expressway.
“Again, the key question is the number of at-grade intersections and access points. Much of MTTPR report 64’s conclusions concerning the northwest appear to rest on their identification of the dispersed nature of travel patterns in the area, associated with the dispersed pattern of employment opportunities.
“Report 63 states that there seems to be a need for additional distributor roads. In this connection MTTPR report 64 argues that partial grade separations only work well where the number of turning movements is relatively small. Quite the reverse is true; the dispersed nature of travel in the area suggests that turning movements would continue to be significant at most of the major intersections.
“Full grade separations would involve major expropriation of land. The superiority of full grade separations over partial grade separations lies in the former’s greater design capacity. However, any form of grade separation limits the number of access opportunities and consequently turning opportunities. The inevitable conclusion would seem to be that if it is necessary to construct any new road in the northwest that road should be a conventional arterial road with frequent at-grade intersections and access points.
“In commenting on possible operational improvements, the report suggests that one-way operations would be impractical due to the wide spacing of existing arterials and the resulting increase in traffic would be experienced by east/west arterials and residential streets. However, it seems likely that the construction of a major arterial, such as is envisaged for the Highway 400 extension, would generate at least as much east/west traffic as it attracts vehicles from routes parallel to it.
“It seems quite possible, therefore, that widening existing arterials, both east/west as well as north/south, may bring about a more effective increase in road capacity and reduction of traffic on residential streets than would the construction of a new north/south arterial. This would seem to be almost certainly true were the proposed arterial to have limited access. It would also seem to be a more logical method of improving the distributor road system to accommodate the dispersed trip patterns.
“Finally, a critical aspect of this proposal which will require the most thorough research is the possible impact of a major facility terminating at St. Clair on the streets in the immediate vicinity of that terminus. If, in fact, this facility does not serve travel demands largely internal to the northwest, but instead encourages through traffic beyond St. Clair, the impact on local streets could be extremely serious.
“Should increased traffic volumes lead to further congestion on Keele St. and Old Weston Rd., through traffic will probably spill over onto local residential streets. This is particularly likely in the case of Osler St. and Symington Ave. both two-lane local streets which are the only immediate alternative routes penetrating the east-west CPR rail right of way. These two streets may be especially attractive routes to vehicles ultimately eastbound along Dupont St. and Davenport Rd., either of which may become an unofficial de facto ‘crosstown’ through route.
“If the construction of the 400 arterial to St. Clair resulted in significantly increased through traffic volumes and the concomitant effects just described, pressure to ‘upgrade’ the facility to full expressway status all the way to Lakeshore would seem to be the inevitable ultimate result. The consequences of this for the neighbourhoods en route have been described earlier in this report and in MTTPR reports 44 and 64 and require no further elaboration here. Again, it may be added that the likelihood of this scenario becoming reality would be increased should the proposed ‘arterial’ in fact be constructed as a limited-access highway.
“According to report 63, the anticipated deficiency in road capacity will result from additional traffic expected to be generated by population and employment growth in ‘the areas north of Highway 401 and to the northwest,’ i.e., Brampton, Bramalea. However, it is anticipated that the planned growth of these areas would consist of a balanced growth of residential development and employment opportunities and consequently may not have as great an impact on travel within northwest Metro as is envisaged in MTTPR report 63. If this were not the case, one might prefer suitable modifications to these growth plans rather than attempt to accommodate the travel demands resulting from imbalanced growth.
“Moreover, if ‘major increases in travel in the northwest’ did in fact result from these developments, the conclusion that the dispersed origin and destination precludes effective transit use appears to give less than full consideration to flexible route, non-scheduled transit modes. This type of transit mode could most effectively operate as a feeder-distributor system to a more conventional fixed route, scheduled transit line. This latter could be an expansion of the existing GO service or a subway line which could ultimately be linked to the Bloor-Danforth line or a light rapid transit line. Even if an arterial road were to be constructed along the previously proposed route of the Highway 400 extension to St. Clair Ave., full consideration should be given to the construction of a light rapid transit line on a separate right of way in the median of the arterial.
“If indeed the projected travel demand is as great as reports 68 and 64 appear to suggest, the prospects for the economic viability of transit schemes would seem all the brighter. And if such a service required subsidization, the cost of these subsidies would need to be evaluated against the considerable environmental and community costs which would result from the various road improvement options.
“More detailed information on the projected level, nature and pattern of travel demand than that supplied in MTTPR report 64 would seem to be required before one could draw firm conclusions on the viability or otherwise of the transit option. However, from the information that is available at this time, the option of some form of demand-activated (i.e., non-scheduled, flexible route) transit in conjunction with more conventional transit improvements seems at the very least to warrant further investigation before the conclusion is reached that major road improvements are an inevitable component of the solution to the northwest’s transportation problem.”
In conclusion, Mr. Speaker:
“In discussing the arterial road option it was suggested earlier in this report that the critical criterion distinguishing arterial roads from expressways was the nature of access to the roadway. Arterial roads are typically characterized by frequent at-grade intersections and access points. This characteristic allows arterial roads to better serve local traffic joining and crossing the traffic, although it renders the roadway less efficient for through traffic than a limited-access expressway. Consequently the traffic patterns and land-use patterns associated with arterial roads differ from those associated with expressways.
“It was suggested in this report that the roadway proposed for the Spadina right of way appears to be more akin to an expressway than a conventional arterial road and therefore does not appear to be a suitable solution to the problems identified by MTTPR report 64. It is suggested that the most appropriate course of action at this time would be to commission an immediate study of the local area.
“Similar considerations were raised in connection with the proposed 400 arterial. A limited access, grade-separated facility would not appear to be able to accommodate the frequent demand for turning movements in the area, may act as a barrier to cast-west movement and is more likely to encourage through traffic leading to possibly serious consequences for the areas in the vicinity of the southern terminus of the facility at St. Clair Ave.
“1. That insofar as the extension of Highway 400 to the Gardiner Expressway does not relate to the problems identified in MTTPR report 64, and, according to MTTPR, insofar as no case has or can be made for such a facility, the planning board express its opposition to any proposal for such an extension.
“2. That the planning board express its opposition to any proposal to pave the Spadina right of way at this time and recommend that Metropolitan Toronto commission a study to determine alternative means of solving local traffic problems in this area and to evaluate alternative uses for the existing Spadina right of way.
“3. That the planning board support the commission of immediate detailed studies into the necessity, feasibility and impact of arterial road construction, road widening, operational improvements and flexible transit schemes in the northwest area, and recommend that a decision on extending Highway 400 be postponed pending the outcome of these studies.
“4. That this report be transmitted to the committee on public works for consideration by the Soberman review subcommittee.
“5. That this report be made available, on request, to interested residents’ and businessmen’s associations and other interested and affected parties.”
This road, obviously, is not being built for planning reasons. Is it being built for political reasons? It has been shown that the northwest corridor does not need a downtown route. Remember, no more than 10 per cent of present trips in the area are headed downtown, which is not to say that the percentage might not drastically increase, given a new road aimed into Toronto. Perhaps the reason it is being built and so much money is being misapplied is due to misinformed political pressure.
The Minister of Transportation and Communications (Mr. Snow) is listening to the Metro Toronto chairman. Neither of them is a transportation expert, unfortunately. Nor are they budget experts, apparently. Metro is facing record tax increases, including a special extra levy for roads while other necessary expenditures are being cut. Let me quote from two newspaper articles.
Here’s the Globe and Mail editorial of Dec. 5, 1975:
“Municipal budget preparation is an exercise in pure agony. Almost every item proposed for deletion is certain to cost much more next year or the year after that. Yet there are some projects that have acquired so many demerit points that their expulsion should be swift, automatic and painless.
“We would place the paving of the Spadina Expressway southward to Eglinton Ave., and the southerly extension of Highway 400 as far as St. Clair Ave. into that category. Yet these projects are with us again, propelled by the Ontario government into the welcoming arms of Metro chairman Paul Godfrey and friends.
“The big push came with the announcement from Queen’s Park that the government planned to extend Highway 400 as an arterial road from its present terminus at Jane St., negotiating its transfer to Metro after completion.
“This news, in a letter to Mr. Godfrey from James Snow, Minister of Transportation, was accompanied by an announcement that the province is prepared to provide a normal subsidy to allow Metro to make an immediate start on extension of the Spadina Expressway.
“From a level of government that has recently been doing some heavy preaching on the virtues of municipal belt-tightening this is sheer foolishness. Metro council is capable of its own quota of misjudgements without any help from Queen’s Park.”
We have the ludicrous picture of Metro’s budget subcommittee proposing that, in the interest of strict economy, plans for six out of 10 new daycare centres should be shelved while preparing to launch out on the $1.8-million Spadina extension.
The whole idea of the extension, apart from its cost, drags with it a host of other anxieties. What happens when the traffic hits Eglinton after being funnelled down the extension? How can the project be reconciled with the apparently surprising discovery that downtown automobile traffic has recently grown by 10 per cent and is threatening to choke the life out of the city? Can anyone honestly argue that the Spadina paving is entitled, on grounds of urgent need, to elbow its way into the hard-crust 1976 budget? It appears, despite all the clear indications to the contrary, some Metro politicians are still stuck on roads and the automobile. The proposal for a special new levy of up to $1 per $1,000 of assessment to help pay for road works tells its own story.
Mr. Speaker: Would it be convenient for the member to break his remarks?
Mr. Ziemba: This point would be quite satisfactory, Mr. Speaker.
Mr. Speaker: Thank you very much.
Mr. Ziemba moved the adjournment of the debate.
Motion agreed to.
Hon. Mr. Welch: Before moving the adjournment of the House, it has been our custom to sort of lay things out for the week. Unfortunately, with the order paper being the way it is, I can only suggest what we might do on Monday. The House leaders are meeting Monday at lunch time and we can then plan the remaining days of next week that we will require to complete the order paper.
In the meantime, on Monday we will continue with our examination of Bill 20, to be followed by Bill 26 and then by Bill 5. If there were time, we might get those two second readings that are on the order paper cleaned up, but perhaps that’s a little ambitious, At adjournment time on Monday, we will have a better idea what the balance of the week holds in store for us. If there are no questions, I would move the adjournment of the House.
Hon. Mr. Welch moved the adjournment of the House.
Motion agreed to.
The House adjourned at 1:00 p.m.