31st Parliament, 1st Session

L027 - Fri 21 Oct 1977 / Ven 21 oct 1977

The House met at 10 a.m.




Hon. Mr. Snow: Mr. Speaker, on July 12 last, I advised this House that I had reservations about implementing a moratorium on the issuance of class R -- dump truck -- public commercial vehicle licences for a period of one year across Ontario.

This had been, it should be remembered, one of the recommendations of the select committee on the highway transportation of goods which tabled its report on April 29.

My concern at that time was for a moratorium’s impact on the regional availability of such vehicles. I also indicated that the Ontario Highway Transport Board would continue to monitor the situation, that is, the availability of and the demand for dump truck services.

Today, I can tell you that a recent determination of the situation by both the OHTB and ministry staff, as well as the advice of the dump truck industry itself, indicates there is a very adequate supply of licensed dump trucks operating to meet demands for this service in most areas of the province.

As minister I do not have the statutory authority to declare a moratorium on licence issuing. Neither is there statutory authority to prevent any person from applying for a licence under the Public Commercial Vehicles Act. However, having discussed the matter with the chairman of the OHTB, we are now in agreement that because of the situation I have just outlined it would be in the best interests of both the dump truck industry and the shippers using their services to stabilize the supply at the existing number of licensed carriers, at least for the next few months.

Thus, to implement a kind of moratorium, the Ontario Highway Transport Board will apply a very thorough scrutiny of the need for additional services and, subject to the evidence submitted, it will attempt to restrict the granting of certificates of necessity and convenience, except in those cases of significant urgency. In such a case, the board will issue only an appropriate temporary authority.

Later in this session I will introduce further legislation to deal with some of the more urgent of the select committee’s recommendations and at that time I will provide a complete report on the progress my ministry is making in its review of the balance of the report’s over 300 recommendations.


Hon. Mr. McKeough: Mr. Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to make some comments on the Hon. Jean Chretien’s mini-budget statement of last night.

Mr. Breaugh: It won’t take long.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: The fiscal strategy announced by the Minister of Finance generally reflects the discussions he has had recently with provincial Treasurers. He has stated that there are three things holding back the Canadian economy: 1. Our markets abroad have not grown as fast as had been expected; 2. We are paying the penalty for letting our costs get out of line; 3. We have a confidence problem.

I would only add that costs, in my definition, include government expenditures, not, for example, just wages and salaries. Mr. Chretien believes, as I do, that progress will be slow, and that it will have to be earned through greater productivity and more realistic expectations. He has rejected massive short-term stimulation as a cure for Canada’s economic ills and instead has opted for a fiscal policy which includes important selective measures to stimulate business investment, consumer spending and jobs.

The phased decontrol of prices and incomes commencing April 14, 1978, will provide a boost to confidence across all segments of the economy. I believe the lowering of the permissible increases in wages, salaries and dividends to six per cent in 1978 is appropriate under the circumstances.

Wage settlements for the third year of controls are coming in at close to six per cent on average, partially reflecting the fact that actual consumer price performance in the first year of controls was about two per cent below the AIP wage target, with no penalty on the wage guideline in year two. Market forces in the private sector have brought about a more responsible attitude on both sides of the bargaining table and have effectively restrained settlements.

Furthermore, the depreciation of the Canadian dollar and increased energy prices of the past year represent real adjustments in relative costs of consumer goods that must be absorbed and not passed on. Depreciation has accounted for 1.5 to two percentage points on the consumer price index, and energy price increases another one to 1.5 percentage points over the past year. If these increases are not absorbed then we will never get out of the wage-cost cycle that confronts us.

With cash requirements of $8.5 billion in 1977-78, and even greater requirements forecast for next year, the federal government has decided it cannot afford large-scale actions to stimulate the economy at this time. I agree.

The minister has announced no large increases in government spending which would be counterproductive. But $150 million is being provided for direct job creation programs. In addition, the Minister of Finance has found the resources for a billion and a half dollars in personal income tax cuts -- including the $850 million cost of indexing -- to stimulate consumption, as well as $100 million for a new program of employment credits to create jobs.

Ontario has proposed a temporary and immediate cut in provincial retail sales taxes as well as the introduction of selective employment credits to boost spending and reduce unemployment. The federal actions parallel these suggestions in many respects.

First, the personal income tax is aimed at lower and middle-income earners. It is temporary and the bulk of the benefits will flow out in January and February of next year. This is normally a period of slower economic activity and the tax cut is designed to have its maximum impact early in the year. This personal income tax cut maximizes on the flexibility available within this delivery mechanism. However, it does not have as direct an impact on consumer spending as a retail sales tax reduction which could have taken place immediately.

Second, I would hope the federal employment credit program will be structured along the lines of the Ontario Youth Employment Program which was very successful in creating meaningful new job opportunities for Ontario’s young people. I have already indicated that the proposals put forward by the Canadian Federation of Independent Businessmen are worthy of consideration.

In conclusion, I think it is a realistic statement. It will improve the confidence of business and consumers. The competitive advantage of our industries provided by the depreciation of the Canadian dollar should not be allowed to slip through our fingers. Relative Canadian costs have dropped 12 per cent against the United States and even more against Europe and Japan and this should not be lost to increased wages or reduced efforts to improve productivity. The statement, then, lays out an economic policy we can understand and that we must all build upon.


Hon. Mr. Norton: Mr. Speaker, further to my point of personal privilege yesterday in the House, I would like to make a clarification of some of the comments that I made. You will recall my point of personal privilege related to the Canadian Press wire story which was brought to my attention during the course of the proceedings in the House, and which story had been based upon an interview conducted by Miss Barbara Yaffe of the Toronto Globe and Mail.

During the course of my remarks, the hon. member for Scarborough West indicated that the paragraph which I had just read into the record appeared in the article in the Globe and Mail that morning which I, admittedly, had not read. Later in my remarks there was clearly the implication in my remarks that Miss Yaffe was responsible for the misleading and offensive paragraph.

Mr. Lewis: Down on your knees.

Hon. Mr. Norton: Mr. Speaker, I would like at this time to apologize publicly to Miss Yaffe because shortly after leaving the House, I saw the article that she had written and which appeared in the Toronto Globe and Mail and which was really quite faithful to the content of our interview and it did not contain the offensive paragraph.

Mr. MacDonald: The moral of the story is better research.

Hon. B. Stephenson: He was misled by you.

Hon. Mr. Norton: So I do wish to apologize to Miss Yaffe and if there is a moral to this story, Mr. Speaker, I am sure it is that I really ought to adhere to your injunctions to ignore the interpretations of the hon. member for Scarborough West.

Mr. Havrot: A bad bunch over there.



Mr. Breithaupt: Mr. Speaker, first of all a question to the Premier. As more than six months has passed since the Premier’s announcement that Ontario would prepare a detailed legal opinion on the constitutionality of the Quebec language legislation, can he tell the House what has happened to that opinion? Is it now ready and when will it be released?

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, as I recall, I did inform the House that we were getting a legal opinion. I think, on the first bill that was proposed, I indicated to the House that there were some substantial amendments to the bill as it was finally passed by the assembly in Quebec, and as a result the opinion had to be assessed in light of the changes in that bill. I believe it is available. I will check over the weekend and if it is, have it for the members Monday or Tuesday.


Mr. Breithaupt: Can the Premier advise us if it will be his intention to urge the federal government to challenge the legislation as he indicated he would do if it was found to be ultra vires?

Hon. Mr. Davis: I would want to refresh my memory on the contents of the opinion and make some judgement then. I will be quite prepared to discuss this with the House leader and others when I present the opinion. Being a lawyer himself and, I am sure, being somewhat small “c” conservative, in his approach to the advice of clients in matters of this nature, he will understand that I myself would like to take a look at this before I made any, shall we say, speculative decision.


Mr. Breithaupt: My second question is also to the Premier. Following the reported remarks of the Minister of Housing (Mr. Rhodes) to a Chamber of Commerce audience in Barrie last night, is the Premier aware that the minister was reported to have said that he would not be unhappy to see the Ontario Housing Corporation abolished and that the province should not be in the business of building or owning low-rental housing? If he is aware of that, can he advise us if that in fact is government policy?

Hon. Mr. Davis: I am aware of what the minister may have said in Barrie last evening. It is not the present policy of the government for the Ontario Housing Corporation to move out of the building or provision of housing. I think if the minister indicated that there are many situations where we feel that perhaps the private sector could do this as well --

Mr. Warner: Give it up.

Hon. Mr. Davis: -- or even somewhat better, the minister may have made that philosophical observation. But there has been no decision by cabinet to move out of the activities of the corporation.

Mrs. Campbell: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: In view of the Premier’s remarks, could he then clarify for this House the fact that there is a move, apparently, to dismantle a portion at least of Ontario Housing, in that as I understand it, the package for Metropolitan Toronto is already in place, so that this portion may be transferred to Metropolitan Toronto? Could the Premier clarify that position?

Hon. Mr. Davis: By Monday I will either clarify it or have the minister clarify it. I assume what the hon. member for St. George is referring to is the possibility of having some municipalities assume a greater share of the responsibility for some of these projects. I will be delighted to get this information for the hon. member as early in the week as I can.


Mr. Lewis: I would like to address this question to the Premier; it may be more appropriately addressed to the Treasurer (Mr. McKeough). Could the government report on its discussions with Inco yesterday -- where we stand, what the prospects are for a change in policy and any other particulars which may have flowed from the meeting?

Hon. Mr. Davis: I think that perhaps it would be wise, in that the House has determined -- I think properly so -- there should be a discussion of this at some length this morning, that during the course of that discussion those ministers who were involved will have some information to share with members of the House.

I believe the Minister of Labour (B. Stephenson) was meeting again with some of those affected as recently as 15 or 20 minutes ago. I am sure she will want to share certain aspects of those discussions with members of the House. I would only say, with respect, that perhaps during the debate that will be starting in a very few minutes, might be a more appropriate time to get into some of these issues.

Mr. Lewis: By way of supplementary, could I ask the Premier, regardless of the specifics which may emerge during the course of the debate, is there any lining in the cloud as a result of the discussions with Inco? Is there any reason to hope or to believe that the layoffs, as announced, may be curtailed?

Hon. Mr. Davis: In a matter of this nature and one which I regard as being of deep concern, certainly in the short term, as it relates to the Sudbury basin, I certainly don’t want to mislead anyone or create any feeling of false optimism.

From my information as it relates to the activities of Inco -- and here I am not getting into the potential that exists in certain mines that are not too far distant from the Sudbury basin that could offset some of the employment situation, because I think it would be premature to get into that type of discussion -- I would say to the leader of the New Democratic Party that nothing in the discussions yesterday or any information I have alters the very serious difficulty in which Inco finds itself, nor have we seen anything that would indicate that the proposed layoffs in themselves will be altered.

The point I’d like to make -- and I haven’t had a chance to read Hansard of yesterday but I have read certain reports and watched certain reports late last evening -- is that while I am personally very concerned, as we all are in this House as we feel very keenly the potential difficulties for a number of people in the Sudbury basin, on behalf of the government and very personally, I want to make it abundantly clear that I have total confidence in the ability of the people in Sudbury and the ability of the people in this province that, while it is a short-term problem, it does not in any way reflect on the capacity of that part of Ontario or this province or this country to remain very economically viable.

The nickel industry certainly will survive, Inco will survive, and, most importantly, Sudbury will survive.

Mr. Foulds: How about the workers?

Hon. Mr. Davis: And they will.

Mr. Lewis: Where will the jobs come from?

Hon. Mr. Davis: There will be some

Mr. Speaker: Can we have order, please.


Mr. Lewis: I’d like to ask the Minister of Community and Social Services whether he has read the report in this morning’s paper by a certain female reporter, the one and only Barbara Yaffe, relating to the problems of the placement of the retarded in Metropolitan Toronto.

Hon. Mr. Norton: Yes, I have.

Mr. Lewis: On the assumption that the quality and the content of the report are, as always, unerringly accurate, can the minister perhaps comment on the charges that have been levelled at the ministry, by a number of social agencies involved, at its apparent inability to free money or to create places for very severely disabled retarded children and on the problems the families are having coping?

Hon. Mr. Norton: Yes, I’d be quite happy to. I don’t think it is implied anywhere that there is a lack of funding available to provide the spaces. That certainly is not the nature of the problem that we have consistently been faced with.

The suggestion that there are fewer places in the community in Toronto than we would like to see, is true. There are in total numbers, to the best of my knowledge at this point, about 1,625 children and adults from the Toronto area who are presently residing in residential accommodation, in some cases larger residential accommodation and in many cases community accommodation, group home-type accommodation, across the province.

The unfortunate thing is that of those persons, something like 1,300 are residing in areas outside Metropolitan Toronto. As is suggested in the article by the representative or one of the spokespersons for the Metropolitan Toronto Association for the Mentally Retarded there have been a variety of problems, some of which, related to the location of accommodation within the community because of zoning problems and so on, we are trying to resolve and which Toronto is at present trying to resolve as well.

As was suggested by the same spokesperson, there are situations in which the mental retardation association itself has been a source of some of the problems. They make it clear that it is not entirely the fault of the ministry. We are continuing to try to work with them to resolve some of the differences that have developed.

There is reference there to the proposal to provide 150 spaces in the Metropolitan Toronto area, and the reference specifically is to the proposal in Etobicoke. I am currently waiting for a final report from the task force that was set up to communicate with the members of the public on the specifics of the development of either such a facility or those spaces within the community. The task force has now finished holding its hearings; there have been some 350 persons or groups who have made submissions to the committee. As soon as I have their report, and I am hoping that this will be within the next week or so, I will be in a position, having had that input, to make a decision on the nature of the provision of those 150 additional spaces.

I must say I share the frustration of everyone else in terms of the rate at which we have been able to make progress. But it is not a question of the shortage of funds. That is not the problem.

Mr. Cassidy: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: Will the minister not agree that the major reason for the delays in providing this accommodation in the Toronto area is the insistence of the ministry, despite the Williston report and the Welch white paper, on going ahead with a 150-bed institution in Etobicoke -- despite the opposition of all the people involved in the Association for the Mentally Retarded across the province? Will he not agree that the association, at its last meeting in Niagara, categorically opposed that particular program in favour of increasing community care? If the ministry had gone along with that, then those places would be in Toronto now.

Hon. Mr. Norton: Mr. Speaker, there are a number of erroneous assumptions in the question the hon. member has just asked.

First of all, there has not been a decision to go ahead with a 150-bed facility as he suggests. The whole purpose of the task force, which I established during the summer, was to provide for consultation with interested parties within the community with respect to the kind of spaces that we provided -- whether they would be in group homes or in a 150-bed facility. It was precisely because there had not been a decision and I wanted that kind of input that I established that task force.

The second erroneous assumption is that everyone involved was of one mind. That is precisely not the case. If you look in the article that appeared in this morning’s newspaper, although the spokesperson made reference to 104 people who gave their opinions -- in fact as I have indicated it is 325 persons who made submissions -- she indicated that there was a 50-50 split in terms of submissions. I think that is just about how it has been breaking down.

I have had at least as much correspondence from persons involved with the mental retardation associations who are saying “Let’s get on with it. We need those spaces. We need an intermediate-size facility in the Metropolitan Toronto area which can act as a core residence and provide ongoing services to children in the community.” There is, I admit, a significant group, approximately 50 per cent of the persons involved, who feel quite strongly that it should not be that type of facility at all, but should be entirely on the basis of provision of group home residential settings.

As I say, I hope I will soon, on the basis of the input we have had from my staff and from the people in the community, be able to make a decision and be in a position to proceed. But the member’s assumption is not correct that the community is of one mind.

Mrs. Campbell: Mr. Speaker, in view of the answer given by the minister relating to the problem of zoning as part of the whole problem, what steps has the minister taken with cabinet to review the appeal to him by Mississauga in order to try to overcome the problem of zoning? Has he considered it? What status does it have?


Hon. Mr. Norton: Mr. Speaker, that matter is at present before cabinet. If not, it will be I presume this week. This will be the second such appeal that has come to cabinet, and I would hope that communities across this province would, after this decision, see the pattern and realize that there is a message there; if they don’t, I will have to explore other alternatives.

Mr. Lewis: It won’t work. The minister will have to bring in general legislation.

Hon. Mr. Norton: But I certainly hope they don’t all propose to proceed by the same route, through the OMB and then appeal to cabinet. If that seems to be the pattern that is developing, I will certainly urge my colleagues to take quite definitive action to make it clear that we intend to proceed with the policy that we have enunciated with respect to community living.

Mr. Foulds: Supplementary: Is the minister giving us the assurance that the cabinet will make a favourable decision on behalf of the Association for the Mentally Retarded with regard to the Mississauga question?

Hon. Mr. Norton: I can only give assurance as to what my position is. That’s public. I can’t assure the hon. members precisely what my colleagues will decide. I must say that I would be very surprised if they didn’t agree.

Mr. Speaker: The hon. member for Bellwoods with a final supplementary.

Mr. McClellan: If the pattern of opposition by resident and ratepayer groups to group home facilities continues, is the minister prepared to consider provincial legislation which would guarantee the right of community residents to special-need groups?

Hon. Mr. Norton: If that situation persists I would be prepared to consider any reasonable alternative to ensure that the kind of roadblocks that are currently being thrown up don’t continue.

Mr. Cassidy: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker?

Mr. Speaker: That was the final supplementary; we have had five supplementaries.


Mr. Nixon: Mr. Speaker, if I may direct my question to the Minister of Labour, is she aware of the problems in the industrial area of Nanticoke where industries are attempting to build very large installations in time for their own purposes but find they cannot get sufficient trained pipefitters, steamfitters, and welders in some instances, and are being forced to import these specially trained people from the United States? Is the minister aware that at the present time about 200 of these pipefitters, steamfitters and welders have been brought in because it is not possible to find sufficiently trained people in our own jurisdiction?

Mr. Conway: I think that’s government policy.

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, I am not aware that it is not possible to find sufficiently trained people in our own jurisdiction. As a matter of fact, it is my understanding that we do have a sufficient number of well-trained people available within the province to do this. Unfortunately, under the terms of the agreement there is no solution to a problem which has arisen in that area other than to have the union support the concept of importing members of that union into Ontario to fill the jobs which are required for that construction.

I am sure it is something which should be able to be worked out between the union and the employer in that area. This is one of the ongoing problems we have had with this kind of difficulty, in the far western portion of southern Ontario, on a number of occasions. We have appealed to the Minister of Manpower and Immigration to limit or to stop the issuance of work permits for these people. We are informed that the appeals which he has received from both employers and unions would support the continued issue of such permits. It is a problem which we have been trying to solve but I would have to tell the hon. member that we have not been successful at this time. We have not forgotten it, however, I can tell him as well.

Mr. Nixon: Supplementary: I am glad to hear the minister has not forgotten about the problem, because the real problem surely is that there have been inadequate training facilities to bring on these people to fill jobs that the government must surely have known would be vacant. Texaco has brought in 60 of these people; surely a pipefitter isn’t that esoteric a profession? We have pipefitters, steamfitters, welders and even Treasurers who are sometimes redundant --

Hon. Mr. McKeough: Careful -- careful.

Mr. Speaker: Do you have a question?

Mr. Nixon: Would the minister explain why it turns out to be the responsibility of the government of Canada for letting these people in, since according to Texaco they can’t find them here? Surely this is a concern for the Minister of Labour and the Minister for Colleges and Universities (Mr. Parrott), who is not present.

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, it is my understanding that throughout the remainder of the province of Ontario, there are a sufficient number of such trained people available to fill those jobs.

Mr. Nixon: Not for Bruce Hydro.

Hon. B. Stephenson: But they are unwilling to move to Nanticoke under the terms of the agreement that has been set up in order to work in that area. These are the problems which we are facing and which we are attempting to resolve. It is not a matter of lack of training nor a matter of lack of trained people within the province of Ontario.

Mr. G. I. Miller: Mr. Speaker, I wonder if the minister is aware that local 67 of the pipefitters and pipewelders’ union has 285 apprentices, for whom they are seeking employment, and yet they have imported 60 and, I believe, there are still 200 jobs open for this type of employment? I also understand that Stelco are holding back contracts because of the fact that they can’t find enough pipefitters. Would it not be possible with Fanshawe College so close in Port Dover, working with the Ministry of Colleges and Universities, to set up a crash program of training, to make sure that these young people do have an opportunity of getting jobs?

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, it is my understanding that in the Sarnia region there are 600 trained individuals who are on permit who have not been able to find employment in southwestern Ontario. I am convinced that if some of those could be transferred to other areas or were willing to move to other areas, we could solve all of the problems in the construction industry. We have had a special officer investigating this specific problem and attempting to help us find a solution to it.

Mr. Sargent: Supplementary. Mr. Speaker, someone is awfully mixed up over there. The minister better get her act together with the Minister of Energy (Mr. J. A. Taylor) because the fact is --

Mr. Speaker: Can we have a question, please?

Mr. Sargent: Does she realize that Hydro is paying Lummus $10,000 to train a welder in a three-month course? The minister is importing welders from Europe and she says there are 600 welders available in Sarnia. The minister is off base entirely. When she has Lummus being paid $10,000 for a three-month course by Hydro to train welders, there is something awfully wrong someplace. She should talk to Jimmy about it and find out what’s going on.

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, I was trying to point out that I think there is something awfully wrong. That isn’t the question which has been put on the other side of the house, however. The question is, “Should we ensure in some more direct way the mobility of the trained workers that we have in the province of Ontario?” Should we legislate that where there is a job available, they must go and fill it no matter what the union contract says? That is, of course, I think, an action which many members of this House would hesitate to support.

My concern is that we encourage those workers who are trained and who are available, but are at present not employed, to move to those areas.

Mr. Sargent: Your main concern is you don’t know.

Hon. B. Stephenson: In answer to the question of the hon. member for Grey-Bruce, if he has any brilliant suggestions to help persuade them to move, I wish he’d give them to me.

Mr. Ruston: You’ve got lots of them.

Mr. Warner: You need all the help you can get.

Mr. Gaunt: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: Would the minister be good enough to check that matter out again? With respect to the Douglas Point project, some six weeks ago they were looking for 200 pipefitters. Since Sarnia is within the same union jurisdiction area as Douglas Point and they still couldn’t find those people and had to move out of the province in order to fulfil the need -- and even at that didn’t get the need fulfilled -- would the minister reconfirm the figures which she gave earlier on?

Hon. B. Stephenson: Yes, Mr. Speaker.


Mr. Cassidy: A question of the Treasurer, Mr. Speaker: Recalling that the Treasurer promised in December to take supplementary action this fall if the economic situation called for it, and since the federal Minister of Finance has now seen fit to take supplementary actions in view of the worsening situation in the economy, does the government plan to take supplementary actions within Ontario’s own jurisdiction in order to alleviate the unemployment crisis over the course of the winter?

Hon. Mr. McKeough: Not at this time, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Cassidy: Is the Treasurer satisfied, then, that the actions taken by the federal government are adequate in order to resolve our unemployment and economic problems over the course of the winter?

Hon. Mr. McKeough: Perhaps the member wasn’t here for my statement, but I indicated that in my view it was a realistic statement.

Mr. Kerrio: He’s had a change of heart about the feds.

Mr. Cassidy: I asked whether it was an adequate program in order to alleviate our economic difficulties, in particular in view of recent announcements about further layoffs?

Mr. Warner: He’s not going to do anything.

Hon. Mr. McKeough: As I indicated in the statement -- I’d be glad to send a copy to the member -- with cash requirements this year having gone from about $6.5 billion to a projected $8.5 billion, I thought the moves taken by the federal Minister of Finance last night were realistic and probably all that he could prudently do.

Mr. Peterson: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: In view of the federal Finance Minister’s announcement last night of a modest job tax credit plan, would the Treasurer consider some supplementary provincial effort coinciding with theirs to assist -- through a mechanism which we on this side think is particularly creative -- in a way that would solve some of this unemployment in the short run?

Hon. Mr. McKeough: Not at the moment. We may take that into consideration. We have, of course, as I said in the statement, run a very successful job program during the summer. I would anticipate that circumstances will dictate that we will want to do something similar next summer, and I’m not contemplating any action for this winter. I think the federal government has gone as far as it can afford to go; and I can’t afford to go any further either.


Mr. Sweeney: A question to the Treasurer, Mr. Speaker: My question refers to the serious inequities in residential assessment in the city of Kitchener, of which he is familiar. Given the fact that officials of the Ministry of Revenue confirmed this past summer that up to $640,000 of residential assessment is too high, and given that some of the taxpayers there are paying $400 each in excess of what they should be paying, how can the Treasurer justify his position, set out last week in a letter to the municipality, that he would not support an assessment review or an assessment recount enabling those people to be more fairly assessed and more fairly taxed as of the tax year 1978?

Secondly, does the Treasurer not realize that his colleague, the Minister of Revenue (Mrs. Scrivener), is attempting to resolve this issue and the Treasurer’s stand -- in my perception, anyway -- is making that almost impossible? These people are being dealt with unjustly. How does he justify his position?

Hon. Mr. McKeough: The Minister of Revenue, I believe, is meeting with some of the people -- the representatives of the municipalities -- this afternoon, and I’m hopeful that she can find solutions to these and other difficult problems.

How do I justify our position? I’m anxious to know, and I would think the hon. member would like to know, before any commitments are made, who the burden of taxation is to be shifted to.

Mr. Sweeney: Supplementary: When this question was addressed to the Treasurer a couple of weeks ago, he indicated that he was reluctant to do anything until province-wide market-value assessment was brought in. However, I hope he realizes that the difficulty is that this has been promised three times in this province --

Mr. Speaker: Question.

Mr. Sweeney: -- it has been delayed three times. We have no way of knowing when it’s coming in. The resolution is not in sight.

Mr. Speaker: There’s been no question asked yet.

Mr. Sweeney: What I’m asking is, how does he expect us to be able to resolve the problem, given the recommendations that he has given through market-value assessment, when we have no way of knowing when it’s going to be brought in and how long this inequity will continue?

Hon. Mr. McKeough: These are matters which, I am sure the hon. member knows, will be discussed in this House.

Mr. Conway: No wonder the Tories are doing so well in the Waterloo region. Jack Young will be almost extinct.


Mr. Davidson: Supplementary: Given the fact that these inequities exist throughout the entire Waterloo region, and given the fact that the city of Cambridge a year ago raised this matter and got rebates for some of the people in that area, and taking into account that the inequities in the Cambridge area alone range anywhere from 20 to 40 per cent above normal, does the Treasurer not feel that it’s time he did something to relieve these people of the tax burden they’re carrying?

[10: 45]

Hon. Mr. McKeough: I’m anxious to see any taxpayer relieved of an inequitable tax burden. But before that decision is made, I would like to know and I think the hon. member would like to know who is going to pick up that tax burden.


Mr. McClellan: I have a question of the Minister of Community and Social Services regarding the government’s allowances for severely handicapped children. Given that the ministry staff has advised me that a considerable number of these special allowances granted through order in council have been for less than $150, can the minister explain, in view of the miserable inadequacy of $150 in relation either to home care or to institutional care which is 10 times higher, why they are giving these allowances at less than $150 and how many of the orders in council granting allowances have been for less than $150 a month?

Hon. Mr. Norton: First of all, perhaps I could respond to the general condemnation implied in the question that was asked.

Mr. McClellan: They are inadequate.

Hon. Mr. Norton: The $150 allowance, however miserable it may be in the eyes of the hon. member, is the only such allowance at the present time that’s available in this country. I would like him to know that at the recent conference in Alberta, there were a number of other provinces which were quite interested in the initiative that this government had taken in providing assistance to those persons who are meeting in many cases very costly special needs of children in their own homes.

Mr. Cassidy: You were forced to provide it.

Mr. Warner: Some crumbs are better than none at all.

Hon. Mr. Norton: I’m not prepared to sit back and accept that kind of shallow criticism of this program.

Mr. Warner: It’s a great improvement from your predecessor.

Hon. Mr. Norton: I hope that the hon. member, if he is going to be a critic, will be more constructively critical of the program rather than making such ill-informed and inane comments.

Mr. McClellan: Inadequacy is inadequacy, no matter how you cut it.

Mr. Warner: You are a progressive Neanderthal.

Mr. Lewis: Do you know there is a petition for the return of the member for Prince Edward-Lennox (Mr. J. A. Taylor) to that portfolio?

Hon. Mr. Norton: Perhaps we should have that kind of relief in the Legislature once in a while.

Mr. Lewis: I would think so.

Mr. Conway: Bitter. You will never be Premier that way.

Mr. Breithaupt: I don’t know.

Hon. Mr. Norton: With respect to the comments about the quantum, in terms of the sum being less than $150, yes, that’s true. I don’t have a precise breakdown at this point as to the numbers that would be under $150. I can assure the member that it is the minority.

The figures that I have on that breakdown are not current. They were current as of the early part of this month. They were running on a ratio of about one in six -- the under $150. The others, the majority by far, were at the maximum level. I will try to get updated figures on that kind of breakdown.

There have been to date 656 applications. Of those, about 546 have either been approved or are under review by the review committee. I believe of that figure 112 have not yet had a recommendation.

In total, there are about 110 where we discovered there was a problem because the application came from someone who was already receiving family benefits. The problem we encountered there was that we didn’t want to have the $150 calculated in other income. So there are now regulations which will, I expect, this week be approved by cabinet to exempt the $150 from the calculation of other income.

Those persons then in that group of 110 will be going ahead immediately with retroactive payment to the time of the application. The only holdup there was that under the current regulations without the change we ran into that problem which had not been anticipated in advance. Of the 656 applications in total, there are about 96 who have been found ineligible for a variety of reasons, in some cases because of the quantum of family income. In other cases the reasons might well vary.

Mr. McClellan: He is not answering the question, Mr. Speaker.

Hon. Mr. Norton: So that fewer than one in six have been rejected up to this point.

Mr. Foulds: Does this verbosity come as a result of inherited incapacity?

Hon. Mr. Norton: No, I am just trying to give information to the hon. member.

Mr. Speaker: I think the answer has been quite complete.

Hon. Mr. Norton: He has a supplementary after that?

Mr. Speaker: Does the member have a brief supplementary?

Mr. Lewis: Why should the supplementary be brief?

Mr. McClellan: Since the minister didn’t answer the question, which was to explain why some were less than $150, maybe he could give me a written answer to that and I will ask a supplementary, with respect. When does he intend to bring in legislation, as he promised on August 12, which would end the totally unsatisfactory practice of granting so far some 500 amounts of money through orders in council?

Mr. Breithaupt: We need more people in the Legislature like Ross McClellan.

Hon. B. Stephenson: Oh, disastrous.

Hon. Mr. Norton: Mr. Speaker, I would hope that we would be in a position to take some legislative action by spring. I do not propose to rush into legislation --

Mr. Warner: With the swiftness of a wounded turtle.

Hon. Mr. Norton: -- until we have had some more experience with this. It’s interesting what one learns in the early stages of such a program. I think that it would be folly to draft legislation hastily before the experience has been complete and we can apply the experience that we have learned.

Mr. Lewis: We have got to have Taylor back.

Hon. Mr. Norton: Mr. Speaker, I realize that his simplistic solution always is to legislate. I am sorry, I don’t agree with that.

Mr. Lewis: Are you calling Jim Taylor simplistic?

Hon. Mr. Norton: No, it was the hon. member.


Mr. Ruston: A question for the Minister of Energy with regard to profits of Union Gas and Consumers’ Gas in the last fiscal year: I wonder if the minister is going to make representation to the Ontario Energy Board on any new applications by Union Gas and Consumers’ Gas as to the increase in price that they are asking? Union Gas had a profit of $24 million in six months at March 31, 1971 -- $5 million more than the previous year, which is a 20 per cent increase; and Consumers’ Gas had a profit during the six months ending March 31, 1977, of $33 million, when the total for the previous year was $37 million.

Hon. J. A. Taylor: Mr. Speaker, the function of the Ontario Energy Board is to ensure that any rate increase is thoroughly reviewed and that there is a limitation on the profit of the distributing companies such as Union Gas. If there are any surplus profits in their view, then that presumably would go towards ensuring a lower rate than would otherwise occur.

Mr. Conway: Presumably? I am surprised.

Hon. J. A. Taylor: “Presumably” yes, because I have complete confidence in the Ontario Energy Board and I think it’s important to ensure its impartiality and objectivity in these matters. I do not strive to influence that board in its deliberations in connection with these reviews one way or the other. I am sure that the board will take into consideration all of those financial aspects in connection with the current rate review.


Ms. Bryden: I have a question for the Minister of the Environment: In view of the fact that the pulp and paper industry has been under a cleanup directive since 1965 and only a handful of the 40 mills in the province have met any of the objectives set forth in the order, according to a recent report from ministry officials, can the minister explain why, in the five years since 1971 when the Ministry of the Environment was set up, there have been no convictions obtained against the industry for water pollution?

Hon. Mr. Kerr: Mr. Speaker, answering the hon. member’s question, I am trying to figure out dates here. She says five years since 1971. It is my understanding that there was a conviction against one company in 1971 and, as the hon. member knows, we had three prosecutions undertaken last year. I am not able to say whether we have successfully prosecuted any of those companies in the intervening period.

Ms. Bryden: Supplementary: I am referring to the study done by the ministry, called Alternative Policies for Pollution Abatement, which said there were no convictions against the pulp and paper industry for water pollution between 1971 and October 1976.

I wonder if the minister could give us figures on the number of prosecutions instituted against the pulp and paper industry, as well as the number of convictions and the average fine, for the whole period since the 1965 directive was issued?

Hon. Mr. Kerr: Yes, I can get that information for the hon. member.

Mr. Laughren: The crusading Minister of the Environment!

Mr. Warner: Haul out the wet noodle again.

Hon. Mr. Kerr: I might say, in reference to the article which the hon. member mentions, I don’t agree with the article. My ministry’s officials did not say that the industry was 11 years behind.

Mr. Lewis: How come all the ministers are always misquoted in the Globe and Mail?

Hon. Mr. Kerr: If we implement a program, say in 1965, how do we expect that in one year we will meet 1966 standards? The article is wrong in that way. The industry just is not 11 years behind, because it spent approximately $370 million and it takes time to do that.

Mr. Warner: How far behind are they?

Mr. Foulds: Supplementary: Does the snail’s pace of pollution cleanup in this industry, and the lack of convictions that the ministry has managed to obtain, lead the minister to the obvious conclusion that his legislation needs to be stringently revised and toughened so that he can move more expeditiously and, if necessary, obtain the convictions that show he means business?

Hon. Mr. Kerr: I think that our legislation has been effective.

Mr. Foulds: Ten years of failure.

Hon. Mr. Kerr: Our batting record, certainly in any prosecutions that we have undertaken has been good.

Mr. Breithaupt: Tell us about the Dow situation?

Hon. Mr. Kerr: In only one situation -- one claim we made last year against one of the Abitibi mills is that decision being appealed.

The hon. member must remember that there is always a difference of opinion between what a judge will say in respect to our prosecution and the reasons for prosecution -- our grounds, and the way we interpret the legislation.

Mr. Kerrio: That’s a reason for changing the legislation,

Mr. Foulds: The legislation is foggy.

Hon. Mr. Kerr: No, I think our legislation is quite clear; we have been very successful.

Mr. Sargent: What’s being done about Dow Chemical?

Hon. Mr. Kerr: I must admit that in most cases we obtain -- I was going to say a guilty plea, but we do get a conviction against a company without going through the whole process of a trial. This, of course, does not put the Act to the greatest test. But in those cases where we have had lengthy trials, such as the recent Reed trial, we have obtained a conviction. The amount of the fine, of course, is something that the court decides in its wisdom.

Mr. Foulds: In terms of a batting average, one single doesn’t mean the World Series.

Mr. Kerrio: Supplementary: The minister’s contradiction in his statement appears when he suggests that a judge might consider the evidence in a different light than we do. I posed this question before and I pose it again: If the legislation is not adequate, let’s try the minister’s query in Wintario and try us in this Legislature to see if we can put in legislation that will be fair and also able to confirm the minister’s pose here that the polluter will pay.

Hon. Mr. Kerr: Without prolonging this particular question, we are satisfied with the legislation. It is all-encumbrancing; it is probably the best that exists anywhere --

Mr. Conway: Cumbersome is the right word.

Mr. Breithaupt: That’s known as a Freudian slip.

Hon. Mr. Kerr: All-encompassing, I am sorry. Where we have not obtained the conclusion or the decision we have wanted, that is subject to appeal. We don’t agree that it is a fault of the legislation.



Mr. Breithaupt: I have a question of the Minister of Community and Social Services. Can the minister now advise again, following earlier reports by the one and only Barbara Yaffe, that Ralph Blakeman has particular duties --

Mr. Lewis: You could throw in Karl Mallette for George Kerr.

Mr. Breithaupt: -- within his ministry or is, as the minister said, this civil servant either literally or figuratively continuing to sharpen pencils at $36,000 a year?

Hon. Mr. Norton: I can assure the hon. member that at no time, to my knowledge --

Mr. Warner: No, he is sharpening pens.

Hon. Mr. Norton: -- was Mr. Blakeman engaged, either figuratively or literally, in sharpening pencils.

Mr. Peterson: You use ball-point pens, don’t you?

Mr. Lewis: He sat in the library a lot and got paid.

Hon. Mr. Norton: Sometimes researchers do that. I might add that I am a little reluctant to comment more fully on his duties up to this point, particularly in view of the fact, as the member may be aware, there is a lawsuit which --

Mr. Lewis: Yes, it’s sub judice.

Hon. Mr. Norton: -- does relate, as I understand it, in part to an issue relating to Mr. Blakeman’s present employment. I do not wish to be in the situation where I might in any way prejudice the outcome of that case. I might also add that Mr. Blakeman has very recently been offered another assignment. I will know shortly whether he has accepted or not.

Mr. Warner: And you want to be Premier. Cabinet ministers should be put in the back row.

Mr. Breithaupt: While I do not want in any way to involve myself with respect to whether the courts feel that Mr. Blakeman’s duties are satisfactory or otherwise, can the minister not at least tell us what those duties are at the present time?

Mr. Sargent: Dirty pool.

Hon. Mr. Norton: The thing I would like to avoid at this point is public discussion of a matter in which, as I understand it, part of the grounds for the action relates to what Mr. Blakeman considers to be damage to his career. To that extent, I think public discussion of what his career has involved in the last few months could very well have detrimental effect on his rights perhaps and the outcome of the case.

I can assure the hon. member it’s my opinion that he is doing very productive work and that, as I say, he has been offered a new assignment within the ministry which I expect he is going to accept.

Mr. Warner: Sharpening pens?


Mr. Foulds: In the absence of the chairman of cabinet, I would like to ask the Premier a question. I know when I have to lower my sights. Can the Premier inform me if he has any recollection and the result of any consideration by cabinet of the Market Street OMB decision that has been appealed to cabinet by the city of Thunder Bay? Does he have any recollection of that?

Hon. Mr. Davis: What recollection I have probably wouldn’t be adequate to answer what supplementary question may emerge.

Mr. MacDonald: You are very foresighted this morning.

Hon. Mr. Davis: In that I would want the hon. member have as much relevant and specific information as is possible, I have two chores now for the weekend and this will be the third. So early in the week, when the hon. member raises the OMB appeal on Market Street in the city of Thunder Bay, somebody will have the relevant information to the extent that it is possible for the hon. member.

Mr. Foulds: While the Premier is having this anonymous somebody do the research, if the full cabinet has not yet considered the appeal, could the Premier use his good office to speed up the consideration by cabinet of that appeal in that the residents have been waiting now for some considerable length of time? The objectors in the case, Lakehead Developers, took a full two months to file their material with cabinet for consideration and the residents are in dire need of the water line as a result of the lowering of the water table in their area and hence the drying up of their wells because of a next-door-neighbour kind of development by Lakehead Developers.

Hon. Mr. Davis: I’ll do my best to ignore that the hon. member really is trying to persuade cabinet in its semi-judicial responsibilities on appeals to that very distinguished group. He is putting forward a particular side of the case, which may or may not come to our attention. I will certainly not let his own point of view prejudice whatever decision cabinet may have made or may yet make. But I will get him the information.

Mr. Foulds: And it will be an enlightened decision?

Hon. Mr. Davis: Oh yes. They are all like that.


Mr. Sargent: Mr. Speaker, a question of the Premier rather than the Minister of Energy, because asking the Minister of Energy a question is like the Blue Jays losing three games in a double-header.

Some hon. members: Question.

Mr. Peterson: Don’t you agree, is the question.

Mr. Sargent: I would like to ask the Premier a very yes or no question. Can he advise the House at what stage is the pending purchase by Hydro from Denison of $1 billion worth of uranium for delivery between 1980 and the year 2000 when the world price for uranium is ranging from $14 to $40 a ton? I would like to ask if he can tell us at what stage we are now in this purchase.

An hon. member: Say yes.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, I don’t want to get into the question of the Blue Jays losing three games in a double-header.

Mr. Kerrio: Yes or no?

Hon. Mr. Davis: That is something they succeeded in not doing. That is a double negative for the hon. member if he doesn’t quite understand, and I have difficulty in answering that question yes or no.

Mr. Peterson: Triple negative in this province.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, you might give me some advice as to how one can answer a question like that yes or no. So I guess the only way I can answer would be a little bit of yes and a little bit of no and somewhere in between is maybe. The truth of the matter is negotiations are still going on.

Mr. Sargent: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: Is the Premier not concerned about committing $1 billion for the next generation when a lot of people are concerned about the fact that nuclear power will not be around then? Is that a matter of concern to him?

Mr. Worton: Yes or no.

Hon. Mr. Davis: I’d have to say this to the hon. member. If nuclear power is not part of the Hydro system even in the year 2000, a lot of us are going to be in trouble and the hon. member will be operating more in the dark than he is presently.

One might argue as to just how extensive the program may be over a period of years, but I would suggest that certainly some form of nuclear power will be with us during the hon. member’s lifetime. Certainly I am concerned about what the price may or may not be. I am also concerned that the people of this province have a certain security of electricity, because while it may not be relevant for the hon. member it is for those of us on this side of the House. We happen to think electricity is still somewhat essential to the economic and social well-being of the people of this province.

Mr. Peterson: You are in favour of electricity, are you?

Hon. Mr. Davis: Yes, we are in favour of electricity.

Mr. Sargent: Supplementary: In view of the fact that the government has removed Hydro from the elective process by putting them out there where we can’t find out what is going on, will the Premier tell the House why he won’t bring this matter of $1 billion before this Legislature for scrutiny to find out what is going on?

Hon. Mr. Davis: Of course I haven’t said that I won’t.

Mr. MacDonald: I have a double-barrelled supplementary question in this connection.

Is it accurate that the negotiations are on the lines of a price that would be half way between Denison’s costs and the world price? Secondly, is it accurate that the procedures call for a confirmation of any final negotiation, any conclusion that is negotiated by order in council by the cabinet?

Hon. Mr. Davis: In that the hon. member already had partially confirmed the answer to that question in his discussions with the chairman of Hydro and also has been --

Mr. MacDonald: What do you mean? He is trying to clear it with you?

Hon. Mr. Davis: No, no. I just happen to know that you have already made some efforts to find out a lot of this information -- and very properly so.

Mr. Lewis: No, no. Hydro approached Donald.

Mr. Peterson: What perception.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Oh, I am perceptive. I do sometimes have access to information that the hon. member has access to. That will come as a great shock to him, but I sometimes do --

An hon. member: Tapping the phone?

Hon. Mr. Davis: -- but not always in the same form or in the same manner. What were the two questions?

Mr. MacDonald: Is it accurate that the price negotiations are floating between Denison’s costs and the world price.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Regarding the first part of the question, I can’t honestly give the hon. member an answer. The contract is still a matter of negotiation. My understanding -- whether it is a matter of statute or not -- is that there is a procedure whereby a contract of this nature would probably have to be ratified or supported by an order in council. That I believe is correct.


Ms. Gigantes: I have a question of the Minister of Education, Mr. Speaker. Could the minister tell us what proportion of the Ontario boards of education have chosen to participate in the program of increased French language instruction?

Hon. Mr. Wells: It is my recollection that about 138 of the boards have indicated that they are going to make some change this year in their program -- increasing their program of teaching French as a second language -- and an additional 38 to 40 have already indicated some plans to change further their programs next year.

I am confident that as the boards have more lead time -- and, of course, they didn’t have too much lead time to get the programs ready for this year -- that the programs of teaching French as a second language will continue to improve in this province. I looked at the programs quickly and I think there is a greater emphasis being put on starting French as a second language at the early grades, and that the question of immersion schools is now being faced by many of the boards; immersion classes and immersion schools are being thought of and, in many cases, instituted where the need is indicated.

Ms. Gigantes: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker: Has the minister any indication from those non-participating boards why they are not participating?

Hon. Mr. Wells: I haven’t at the minute, but I am sure that in the course of the next few months, as our regional offices go around the province and meet with curriculum people from the boards, we will find this out. I remind you again, though, that there are only, as I recall, two boards in the province that didn’t have some program of French as a second language in their schools.

Mr. Nixon: Supplementary: Is the minister aware that there are a number of high schools in the province which do not offer French in any part of their curriculum whatsoever, the reason being that no student has indicated that he or she wants to take French? Is he aware that some high schools have no French instruction at all?

Hon. Mr. Wells: I must say that I find that rather surprising. Could the hon. member give me a list of those high schools? If he is saying that there are high schools in which there is no French in grades nine to 13 being offered at all because there is no demand, I would find that rather surprising.

I mean, there is no question that the number wishing to take French in the secondary schools has been decreasing, but it has not been brought to my attention that there are any schools where French has been completely eliminated as a program. Perhaps he is confusing it with Latin or something.

Mr. Nixon: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker. Unfortunately the same thing is happening to French under the minister’s direction as happened to Latin under the direction of the Premier during his tenure. Why should anybody take French under the minister’s program when they don’t need it to get into university, and the encouragement is completely superficial?

Hon. Mr. Davis: I was a great supporter of Latin. It is the only subject I did well in. I supported that.

Mr. Nixon: It is moving out of the high schools in spite of all that the minister is saying.

Hon. Mr. Davis: I have never been negligent about Latin.

Hon. Mr. Wells: I think we have to reject the idea that French is moving out of the high schools.

Mr. Nixon: It is.

Mr. S. Smith: It has already moved.

Ms. Gigantes: It already has.

Hon. Mr. Wells: I find that there is a greater interest in French as a second language this year than there has ever been.


Mr. S. Smith: You are not meeting it.

Hon. Mr. Wells: We will find that we have reached the turning point and students will want to take the course. I really think that my friend should give me, privately, some of the names of the high schools where French is not being taught at all in this province. I would like to know because it has not been brought to my attention.

Mr. Foulds: Supplementary, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker: A brief supplementary. We have one minute left.

Mr. Foulds: Can the minister tell us if he has any reports from his regional offices of boards putting undue obstacles in the way of developing both second language and French immersion programs in terms of forcing parents to pick up transportation costs if their children wish to participate in those programs?

Hon. Mr. Wells: I don’t have any indications, Mr. Speaker, but I can imagine that probably because transportation is left at the discretion of the local board there will be disputes over transportation costs. We do not mandate that transportation be paid for by a board. As you know, there are certain regulations in the Act that if the students live beyond a certain distance, transportation must be provided. Otherwise, it doesn’t have to be. I am sure there are disputes, but I haven’t had any brought to my attention.




Mr. Villeneuve from the standing social development committee reported the following resolution:

Resolved: That supply in the following amounts and to defray the expenses of the Ministry of Colleges and Universities be granted to Her Majesty for the fiscal year ending March 31, 1978:

Ministry of Colleges and Universities

Ministry administration program ....... $5,741,000

University support program ............ 793,487,000

Colleges and adult education support program ................. 391,273,000

Student affairs program ................... 82,281,000



Mr. Williams moved first reading of Bill 74, An Act to amend the Legislative Assembly Act.

Motion agreed to.

Mr. Williams: The amendment would require a person who holds office as a member of a council of a municipality whose term is not yet three-quarters expired to resign his office on official nomination day if he wishes to be elected to the assembly.



Mr. Lewis moved, pursuant to standing order 30(a), a matter of urgent public importance, namely, the disastrous economic blow which will strike the region of Sudbury and the economy of Ontario if the International Nickel layoffs of 2,800 people, as announced, are permitted to occur.

Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, I’m wondering if we might expedite the consideration of this very important matter by the House agreeing that it wouldn’t be necessary to go through the 15 minutes of explanatory comments to persuade the Speaker. Could we now put the question to the House and proceed?

Mr. Speaker: Shall the debate proceed?

Motion agreed to.

Mr. Lewis: Mr. Speaker, I will be as brief as possible. This is one of the most difficult predicaments to have faced this House in a number of years. I listened very carefully to the Premier’s effort at reassurance during question period this morning. I have no doubt that he may wish those reassurances to be true. But it was for those of us in this caucus a far too sanguine performance, speaking much too much to generalities and not nearly sufficiently to the specifics -- the compelling and in many ways terrible specifics of several thousand families facing what must surely be personal and collective economic disaster at the end of January, 1978.

We think in this caucus that the calamity of Sudbury has a certain obvious inevitability about it, that there was a certain logic at work which flows, on the one hand, from the failure of government policy and, on the other hand, from the way in which that company has operated within a capitalist economy. I’ll tell you what I’d like to start with, Mr. Speaker, if I may.

I want to make a short, precise and fundamentalist response to what is happening to Sudbury today, because I genuinely believe, we genuinely believe, that that’s the way it should probably be approached. There seem to me to be five specific points which are worth making in rapid succession. Probably there are many more which others will add; certainly my colleagues from the Sudbury basin will.

First -- and I say this to the Minister of Labour and to the rest of the cabinet -- it is utterly unconscionable that Inco should not have consulted with the government in advance of its announcement. It shows the extraordinary contempt in which the cabinet is held by that particular multi-national corporation and the fact that they think they have absolutely no responsibility to consult or to work in advance when they visit this kind of catastrophe upon a community which has made them one of the wealthiest resource corporations in the world.

I sat in this Legislature several years ago when we had the Dunlop closing in downtown Toronto. I wish my colleague from Riverdale (Mr. Renwick) could be here today for this discussion; it was because of his intervention at that point, so aggravated and angry was he, that the cabinet felt, I think, it had to respond. As a result, we got legislation which required a certain specific degree of notice when you were going to terminate employees in the way in which Dunlop behaved.

Inco has given the proper notice, but what we now need is legislation requiring a company that intends to lay off a significant number of workers in its work force to consult several months in advance with the government and the workers and to make provisions avoiding it or an alternative. That’s number one.

Second, we never in this House provided an adequate tax under the Mining Tax Act; I say that to the Premier. Again, my mind goes back. I can go back to the speeches of my colleague from Sudbury East (Mr. Martel), who in 1972, 1973 and 1974 drew to the attention of the government that from mining taxation in this province we were taking 0.89 per cent of total mineral production, one per cent of total mineral production and 1.5 per cent of total mineral production. I think it once rose, in 1968, to 2.26 per cent of mineral production.

In the years when the resource sector was strong, we never took the taxes which the people of Ontario should have seen as their inherent right; therefore, we never built into the Sudbury basin the kind of economic infrastructure which could cushion this type of calamitous blow.

Mr. Speaker, if you want to know, therefore, where some of the responsibility lies, it lies at the feet of those who sit in the cabinet now and indeed very much at the feet of the Treasurers and the present Minister of Northern Affairs (Mr. Bernier).

Third, we never in this province insisted on sitting down with Inco or Falconbridge to find out to what extent they were stockpiling, to what extent they were overproducing, or to what extent they were using the moneys of the province of Ontario to invest abroad. Some of the free-enterprisers over there will say that is undue government intervention. It’s not government intervention; it’s self-preservation. These mines that are coming on stream now in Guatemala and New Caledonia at a cost of billions of dollars have been financed in dominant measure by the people of the Sudbury basin, and the consequences are today visited on them. That lies at the feet of those members on the government benches across this legislative chamber. Surely they know that.

There was no reason in the world why the government couldn’t have spoken to the companies to find out what they were about and what was involved, because it had an economy to protect in Ontario. We talked ad nauseam, I suppose, in a way which offended the government from time to time, about the need for an economic infrastructure in the north and in the Sudbury basin and about what was happening to all of that revenue which was going out.

Need I say what everyone knows? The Sudbury basin is the richest single resource basin in the western world. There is nowhere that so much has been taken out and so little has been returned. So why, one asks, do 2,800 workers have to face layoffs at the end of January 1978? That brings me to the fourth point I want to make.

The fourth point is that we compounded our negligence around the raising of tax revenues and our refusal to examine the investment of these companies abroad by granting a series of special exemptions under the Mining Act which otherwise would have determined that Inco and Falconbridge process and refine their ores in this province or in this country. Our belief on this side of the House is that the government never really intended that the processing and refining occur here domestically, that it was always willing to give them an exemption, a tax concession, a special depreciation allowance or another tax exemption. Whenever they wanted it, they got it and indeed they persist until the end of 1985.

Again one asks how are we going to build the kind of secondary manufacturing industry, service industry and economic infrastructure into the Sudbury basin, if jobs are given away by refining and processing abroad. So they vault off to Wales, or they vault off to Norway. And what’s left for Sudbury? Twenty-eight hundred unemployed, which brings one to the fifth and obvious point. This is absolutely characteristic about everything we’ve ever said about northern Ontario. This is the consequence. This is the inevitable, inexorable consequence of looking at the north as a resource hinterland, not just for southern Ontario but virtually for the rest of the world. We’ve said we can’t allow it any longer, and the government can’t allow Inco to get away with this.

I know the members of the Legislature on the government side will stand this morning and will say, “The international nickel market is in difficulty. We can’t control that. Demand isn’t as high. Overproduction is great.” That is no solace to those who face the calamity of Sudbury and the ominous implication of Inco’s statements that more cutbacks may indeed be coming in 1978. It provides no solace for what we have squandered over the last generation in the service of prostrating the workers in the economy to the profits of Inco. So we say to the government in as positive and constructive a way as we can that, as it is looking at this kind of thing and as it is negotiating over the travail of the last 24 or 48 hours and the announcement, that it look at it in the following ways:

One, we say to Inco that if they proceed as they have announced, we will withdraw the exemptions which allow them to process and refine abroad. And, yes, I’ll go further than that. If Inco then thumbs its nose at government, government has alternatives. Government can buy a sufficient number of shares to have a controlling interest in the decisions of that multi-national corporation or, if they have such total indifference to us, then maybe it’s time to start thinking seriously about the public sector for Inco. Maybe it’s time. Maybe it’s finally time. Maybe they’ve driven us to the wall. I concede that there are measures which could be taken short of that and those are the measures we would advocate. But when you’ve got a whole economy of northern Ontario, not to mention the consequences for the rest of the province, then it’s time.

Mr. Deputy Speaker: The hon. member’s time has expired.

Mr. Lewis: I will just tie it together, Mr. Speaker. The second, third and fourth points are simply that if Inco proceeds, they cannot be allowed to proceed until alternative jobs are made available, until a task force has been created which involves the union, the workers there, in the planning for the community and, finally, until some kind of additional benefits have been worked out. I don’t want to plead with government. I don’t want to beg with government. We just simply want to say this is the pattern of resource development in northern Ontario. It has resulted in one calamity after another, and today in this Legislature, it’s time to call halt and face that company squarely and turn its obligations around where they belong, to the workers who create the wealth in the Sudbury basin.

Mr. S. Smith: Mr. Speaker, I rise at this time to present the views of my party on the very troubling and anguish-producing situation in Sudbury and the terrible future that faces, not only the people of that region, but so many of us in Ontario, if we find our mining industry gradually undergoing this kind of dreadful setback. Other members of my party will speak on specific ways in which we think the government of Ontario can intervene to assist those families suffering from the proposed layoff, and specific ways in which we think that the life of those workers in the mining industry can be improved; and how we can guard against this kind of thing happening.


However, I want to address myself almost entirely to the situation in which Inco now finds itself in terms of its international investment. Inco says this layoff is due to the unexpectedly low market for nickel products in the world, and I think they are correct in that sense. There is an unexpectedly low market which did not make its usual recovery at the three-year cycle, as one normally expects, and I do recognize the costs of carrying a huge stockpile in the neighbourhood of $1 billion. These costs are becoming so enormous that it’s very difficult for the company to deal with a serious cash flow problem.

I recognize that their stockpile already is about two and a half times its usual size and it is costly to maintain; but the company has found cash to invest in foreign operation the cash flow problem has not restricted them from making that kind of foreign investment in Guatemala and in Indonesia. These operations and their impact on Ontario are exactly what I want to examine.

Let’s look first of all at the pattern of investment. Members will note from the graph which I am holding in my hand that the amount of investment which Inco has made in Ontario has gone down from a high of $224 million in 1970 to a low of $58 million in 1973, and it’s $90 million in 1976. But foreign investment has gone, from $17 million in 1972, gradually upward year by year to $369 million in the year 1976.

What is that foreign investment doing and what is the company’s reason for it? The company said they anticipated growth in the nickel market sufficient that it would take into account not only the Sudbury product but also would create a need for a product from other ore bodies in the world. They felt that failure to invest elsewhere might put undue pressure on the Sudbury area. Whether we take them as credible or not, let’s look at that.

The expected growth in the world market has not occurred. Furthermore, the laterite ores in the rest of the world, in the tropical regions in which these investments are placed, have turned out not to be as easy and as productive and as cheap to mine as previously anticipated. It takes a lot of energy to release the nickel from those ores, and with the soaring cost of energy it turns out now -- and I have this from the officials from Inco who visited us yesterday -- that the Sudbury basin can in fact produce competitively with those laterite ores and beat the price today for the product that is being made from the laterite ores.

Furthermore, the company plans that these foreign plants will produce a product which they term 75 per cent matte. It’s a more crudely refined nickel; it’s not as highly refined as those which we have been accustomed to trying to sell in the world market. But they say, and I have no reason to believe otherwise, that there has now come to be a kind of currency in the world in 75 per cent matte. That’s the product which is more easily sold into certain markets, particularly Japanese and European markets, today; and it turns out that that’s a product which we could produce from Sudbury, provided the government is willing to permit that to happen.

We could produce it from Sudbury and beat the price of Indonesia and Guatemala into the European and Japanese markets. The plans of the company are to have the Guatemala plant come on stream in 1978 and supply the equivalent of six per cent of Sudbury’s output into western Europe, some of it to be further refined in their Welsh refinery. The Indonesian plant, in which Inco owns 90 per cent, approximately, has three production lines, each of them also equivalent to approximately six per cent of Sudbury’s production. One of them for sure will be on line in 1978 -- its product has already been sold ahead of time to Japan -- and the other two are presently being negotiated for and are expected to produce in early 1979.

Each of those six per cents represents approximately 700 jobs in Sudbury, and all four of those production lines, the one in Guatemala and the three in Indonesia, represent, by coincidence, 2,800 jobs in Sudbury. Sudbury could compete if the government would allow the shipment of 75 per cent matte on a contract-by-contract, longer-term basis.

We favour, as much as anyone else, more refining and fabricating in the mineral sector in the north -- and it should have been done long ago. However, we cannot turn our backs on the realities of the international market today.

Mr. Laughren: Unbelievable.

Mr. Lewis: That is a sellout.

Mr. S. Smith: Just listen for a moment. There happens to be a change in the international market for 75 per cent nickel matte. If we don’t sell it, it will be bought by Japan from Indonesia -- and that is what they are contracting for today. If my friends will do their research, they will find that out.


Mr. S. Smith: Therefore, unlike the rhetoric and the usual socialist slogans that come from the left over there, we propose a plan that can save jobs in Sudbury. We ask and implore the Premier to listen to this plan.

First of all, give Inco the right to sell 75 per cent matte on a contract-by-contract, reasonably long-term basis --

Mr. Cassidy: More concessions.

Mr. Martel: Why not just give it to them?

Mr. S. Smith: -- in those markets which they are currently planning to serve from Guatemala and Indonesia.

Second, we must demand immediately -- and the Ontario government must be very firm about this -- that Inco cease all operations in Guatemala and Indonesia right now, that all investments which they are making with Ontario money in Guatemala and Indonesia cease immediately --

Ms. Gigantes: The Liberals aren’t even prepared to nationalize that.

Mr. Lewis: It deserves public ownership, that’s why.

Mr. S. Smith: -- that they undertake to meet the Japanese contracts, which they already have for their Indonesian operation, and the European contracts --

Hon. B. Stephenson: Which they don’t have.

Mr. S. Smith: -- which they will be getting and are now negotiating for their Guatemalan operation -- that these contracts be met from the Sudbury operation.

Mr. Lewis: What if they say no?

Ms. Gigantes: Yes, what if they say no?

Mr. S. Smith: I shall get to that. I am glad I have the hon. members in such suspended interest.

Mr. Lewis: He does.

Mr. S. Smith: Until the anticipated expansion in the world market of nickel occurs -- and that is the expansion which was the justification for the taking of Ontario money and investing it abroad in the first place -- until that expansion occurs, they must cease all those international operations and devote their premier attention to the Sudbury basin.

Ms. Gigantes: Or else?

Mr. S. Smith: If they fail to do that, the full force of the Ontario government must be brought to bear on this firm in every way that it possibly can.

Ms. Gigantes: How?

Mr. Lewis: What does that mean?

Mr. Martel: We should send the troops in.

Mr. S. Smith: We must make sure, I say to the Premier, that the people who are representing the interests of the Sudbury basin in a very highly competitive world market, where we are having difficulty selling in the Japanese and European markets, are not the same individuals who have a conflict of interest and are representing our competitive sites that exist in Indonesia and Guatemala.

Mr. Cassidy: Jesus, this is unbelievable. He doesn’t believe in interfering with free enterprise either.

Mr. S. Smith: Let me show three conflicts of interest that Inco has right now. In the first place, they had to make a decision whether to open operations in Indonesia and Guatemala in order to produce 75 per cent matte, rather than try to persuade the Ontario government to produce that product here in Sudbury. They should have been talking with the government, and the government should have been talking with them. The government should have known -- there was a change in the international market for 75 per cent matte.

Mr. Lewis: What is this 75 per cent matte?

Mr. S. Smith: We should have been producing that product. They therefore had a conflict of interest in moving, instead, into Guatemala and Indonesia to put out that particular product which can get under the Japanese and European tariffs.

Mr. Martel: He is dumber than I thought he was

Mr. Lewis: He has been conned.

Mr. Mackenzie: Completely conned.

Mr. S. Smith: Secondly, we have to recognize there is a second conflict of interest. The company right now has a choice of meeting its Japanese and European contracts from its foreign operations or from Sudbury.

Hon. B. Stephenson: It doesn’t have any European contracts.

Mr. S. Smith: That is a conflict of interest which is working against the interests of Sudbury.

Mr. Swart: That’s a multi-national corporation.

Mr. S. Smith: Yes, it is multi-national, I quite agree. And there’s no reason why we should kotow to multi-national corporations.

Mr. Lewis: The member has been conned.

Mr. Deputy Speaker: Order, please.

Mr. S. Smith: There is a third and even more important consideration. The investment which the company must make to keep up the plant in Sudbury -- to make it modern and competitive, to make sure that it doesn’t become rusty and obsolete -- that investment, which must be made there, instead of being made there is going into its operations in other parts of the world.

Mr. Lewis: And he thinks our economics are frightening?

Mr. S. Smith: That is a conflict of interest which will bring about a self-fulfilling prophecy --

Mr. Speaker: The hon. member’s time has expired.

Mr. S. Smith: These are my last words, Mr. Speaker. In that particular self-fulfilling prophecy they will guarantee that Sudbury will become uncompetitive with their international operations elsewhere. Therefore, the full force of government must be brought to bear so that Inco immediately ceases the overseas operations and meets its contracts --

Mr. Lewis: And what will you do if they don’t?

Mr. S. Smith: -- meet its contracts from the Ontario Sudbury basin.

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, I’m pleased to rise to participate in this debate upon the crucial situation which has occurred in the region of Sudbury as a result of the statements and the decisions --

Mr. Lewis: Is that what they do to you when you meet with them privately?

Mr. Speaker: Order, please.

Hon. B. Stephenson: -- taken by Inco.

My very first remark, I would have to say, is that yesterday we did have the opportunity to meet with representatives of Inco, and one of my concerns, having listened to some criticisms from various other sources in the international area and some within our own jurisdiction, was about the competitiveness of the Sudbury operation.

I was pleased to be informed that the cost of producing nickel in Sudbury is competitive, because that company believes that it has one of the finest plants in the world, if not the finest, and the best trained work force in the world and that in any situation that company installation in Sudbury can compete, internationally, nationally, or in any other way.

They believe that in the Sudbury basin they are second to none in terms of competitiveness on the world market. Unfortunately, the world market is not what it should be. At the present time Inco does not have any American contracts to fill, because the steel industry is simply not producing steel.

Japan does indeed have steel production going on and the Canadian companies have been frozen out of that market completely until they complete -- with, I am told, the aid, assistance, and financial support of the federal government of Canada -- the development of the mine in Indonesia and the one in Guatemala. It is, I understand, the purpose of that mine in Indonesia to fulfill whatever contracts they develop within the Japanese market.

Mr. S. Smith: Even more reason to demand they stop production over there.

Hon. B. Stephenson: My chief concern is about the welfare and the future of those individual members of the work force in Sudbury who will be, unfortunately, let go by Inco, under their present program, beginning at the end of January, 1978, and continuing probably towards the end of February, 1978.

Of the 15,200 hourly paid employees at Inco, approximately 1,840 are to be laid off. Of the 3,400 salaried workers, approximately 360 are to be laid off during that term. One does have very real concern for those individuals -- perhaps even more so than one has concern for the future of Sudbury as a whole, because Sudbury is a vital region of this province, one which has faced adversity before and has not died. It will not die this time either. It will, in fact, renew its energy and will go on to greater things in the future.

As a result of my concern I had meetings this morning with representatives of the United Steelworkers of America, the union responsible for the workers at the Inco installation -- with Mr. Stewart Cooke, Mr. Gilbert Gilchrist, and Mr. Dave Patterson. I have to tell you, Mr. Speaker, that it was a very constructive meeting, because there were a number of ideas and proposals which were outlined that I feel justify real exploration, not only with the company but indeed as well with our federal counterparts. That is precisely what I intend to do.

In addition to that, I conferred yesterday with the Hon. Bud Cullen, who is the Minister of Manpower and Immigration, and we have arranged that there will be a joint meeting of the federal officials in that area with the officials of my ministry, along with members of management and the union on Tuesday of next week.

There are several possibilities that have arisen as a result of that discussion which will be explored in depth on Tuesday. I’d simply like to list these for the members, because it’s perfectly obvious to me that the requirement for miners in Canada as a result of this specific problem should be totally channelled through the Sudbury office of Canada Manpower. Wherever a request for a miner occurs in Canada, that request should not be dealt with by a local Manpower office, but by the Sudbury office which is facing the requirement of placing approximately 1,800 trained and experienced miners.


Mr. Laughren: You want to move them out as fast as you can.

Mr. Martel: I don’t believe it.

Hon. B. Stephenson: I think it is also equally obvious that the flow of offshore workers should be stopped completely. If any mining company in Canada requires new manpower it should not be allowed to import that manpower from outside this country; rather it should look at the availability of mining capability in the Sudbury area and utilize that capability first.

It is well known that the federal Department of Employment and Immigration administers the Canada works program which was alluded to last night by the federal Finance minister, and that under that a substantial job creation program has been established for which, I am aware, $57 million of the total of $303 million for Canada was allotted to the province of Ontario.

The potential unemployment levels in Sudbury, it would seem to me, should ensure an increased allotment to that region since the allotments are supposedly based upon unemployment levels, and yesterday’s notification will most certainly dramatically increase the unemployment level within the Sudbury area. I would like you to know, Mr. Speaker, that we will be making strong representation to support the allocation of the maximum available funds for the benefit of affected employees in the Sudbury region.

There have been certain criteria established for the allocation of such funds, based upon the qualifications established within the Department of Employment and Immigration. Although there has not been demonstrated to this date any flexibility, I think there must be some flexibility in the drawing up of those qualifications which could be applied to the mining people particularly in the Sudbury region, with the hope of improving the rate at which funds are allocated for this purpose in that area.

Mr. Speaker, I can assure you that we shall be doing everything within our power to urge the federal government to provide that flexibility.

In addition, there are federal funds available for temporary relocation assistance. I would propose to explore the prospects of diverting as large a proportion of available funds as it is possible to do to assist the Sudbury workers who may be able to be employed in the surrounding area. As most of us are aware, there is some expansion going on not too far distant from Sudbury which I think we could assist in speeding a little. I would hope that as a result of that expansion it might be possible that a substantial number of individuals who are as experienced and as well trained as the Sudbury workers are, to move to, for example, Elliot Lake.

Mr. Martel: What will they live in, tents?

Hon. B. Stephenson: I am not suggesting that, indeed, they must move permanently to that site, because I think it is quite possible that with the assistance of the federal government we could establish a transportation program --

Mr. Martel: They could live in tents; there is no housing.

Hon. B. Stephenson: -- in order to help those workers to travel between their home sites in Sudbury and their work sites in other areas in the surrounding region.

I think it is possible that some of those workers who are qualified in Sudbury might wish to consider this kind of activity, and I would propose that we support as vigorously as we can, in all manners of support, such a program of providing assistance for transportation or for relocation if necessary. The Elliot Lake area is not the only one, but it is certainly the one which comes to mind most readily.

In addition to that, on July 19 this year the federal Parliament amended the Unemployment Insurance Act, and under the amending Act, which is called Bill C-27, provision was made which empowered the newly created Canada Employment and Immigration Commission to make regulations providing for the payment of work sharing benefits to qualified claimants. I would remind you, Mr. Speaker, that thus far this section has not been proclaimed into law.

The intention of the section, as I understand it, is to encourage employers, trade unions and employees to establish satisfactory work sharing arrangements to minimize the effect of short-term unemployment.

It may well be that this critical and unfortunate situation in the Sudbury region lends itself to the implementation of a work sharing arrangement which would qualify the affected employees for benefits, at the same time remaining at work for a reduced work schedule. I recognize that this is not entirely satisfactory, either from the union’s point of view nor from management’s point of view, but I think that in this situation we must be prepared to consider all of the avenues which might be open to us to resolve the critical situation.

Ms. Gigantes: Deal with Inco.

Mr. Martel: Why don’t you deal with Mother Inco?

Hon. B. Stephenson: It is a novel concept and there may be substantial problems in working out appropriate arrangements, but we shall be working diligently with both the management and union concerned in this situation to find solutions to the problems which have arisen; and to develop long-term solutions as well, since I intend to convene a special meeting of the Ontario manpower coordinating committee in order to bring this before that committee for its serious consideration.

Mr. Swart: Shouldn’t that have been done two or three months ago?

Mr. Laughren: I am depressed by the comments of the two previous speakers. The Minister of Labour’s response is defeatist and inadequate.

Hon. B. Stephenson: It is certainly not defeatist.

Mr. Laughren: The Leader of the Liberal Party’s response would result in a giveaway of awe-inspiring proportions, the likes of which we have never seen in this country. I can only conclude that he has been completely conned by Inco.

Mr. Deputy Speaker: Order. The member for Nickel Belt has the floor.

Mr. Laughren: The massive layoff is a serious blow to a community that too often has been subjected to the whims of Inco and Falconbridge. Without exception, those whims have been self-serving and destructive in both social and economic terms. The Sudbury basin has delivered enormous profits to absentee landlords for many years. Those landlords’ allegiance is to the bottom line on an international balance sheet and nothing more. Neither Inco nor Falconbridge paid homage to acceptable business or social ethics, and I mean that as seriously as I know how. Their activities in the Third World debase us because they are headquartered in this province.

Mr. Lewis: That’s true.

Mr. Laughren: They are active in racist regimes in the Third World where labour is exploited and abused through military dictatorships.

Mr. Lewis: That’s right, especially Falcon- bridge.

Mr. Laughren: Amnesty International tells us in Indonesia there are 100,000 political prisoners. Let us have no illusions about the intentions or the behaviour of the resource corporations active in the Sudbury basin, and quite frankly that makes them easier to deal with. The layoff of 2,800 workers will have in economic terms more of an effect than that on jobs in the Sudbury area, probably between 5,000 and 10,000, with a multiplier effect thrown in. This government has a responsibility that goes beyond sitting on its collective hands waiting for Inco to make up its mind and making clucking sympathetic noises such as the Premier (Mr. Davis) made this morning in his remarks.

When I moved to Sudbury in 1969 there were 18,000 hourly rated employees. There will be about 10,000 now because of the capital intensity of the operation.

Mr. S. Smith: There is no coincidence there, is there?

Mr. Laughren: This government has presided over a distorted resource policy in the province of Ontario. They have encouraged the rapid extraction and sellout of this resource. There was a day when Sudbury supplied up to 90 per cent of the western world’s supply of nickel. Today it’s down around 30 per cent.

Mr. S. Smith: Since you moved there, eh?

Mr. Laughren: Think of what we could have done over the years when we had that kind of control over the market. Now the company claims that there is an oversupply of nickel. It’s an oversupply created by them. It’s ironical that while Inco was announcing its impending layoff here in Toronto, some of the families, the workers in Sudbury, were packing their suitcases to go to Guatemala for a two- or thee-year period to bring the operations there on stream. Talk about digging your own grave.

Mr. S. Smith: So you do agree with us.

Mr. Laughren: That’s what Inco is doing and we are all going to pay for it, but primarily the workers in Sudbury will pay for it. The choice for Ontario is clear. We can either continue to allow Falconbridge and Inco to act in irresponsible ways, the way they have in the past, or we can do something about it. I believe that this government has an opportunity to intervene on behalf of the people of Ontario in a clear and decisive way. That intervention must take the form of the immediate and crisp public ownership of the nickel resources of this province.

Mr. Warner: You laugh, you sit and laugh -- 2,800 out of work; sure, great joke.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Your own leader was smiling. Don’t accuse me of laughing. This isn’t what you were saying last June.

Mr. Laughren: Mr. Speaker, it is folly to pretend that tax concessions or processing allowances will solve the problem. We’ve been that route. Taxation of the resource sector simply cannot work, for very elementary reasons. If taxes are increased the companies can merely highgrade the ore; take out the profitable part, leave the bad stuff there and invest the money in the Third World. When they transfer the profits to the Third World they are, in effect, making the supply of nickel superfluous here.

The Treasurer’s (Mr. McKeough) silly, vacuous shouting yesterday spoke more to his terminal myopia on economic matters than to any kind of alternative policy on his part. The Treasurer himself has stated that there will be no secondary development in northern Ontario for 20 years. That’s the man who is responsible for the economic development in northern Ontario, and he makes statements like that. His clichés are not just silly, they’re becoming downright offensive in times like this.

But the contradictions are really remarkable. Prime Minister Trudeau told us the other day that Canadians have got to work harder. I want to tell you something, Mr. Speaker -- tell the Inco workers in Sudbury, tell the steelworkers in Sudbury, that the harder they work the faster they will be out of a job. Those are the kind of contradictions that workers in the Sudbury area are facing.

The Minister of Northern Affairs (Mr. Bernier) agrees with International Nickel, that the problem isn’t really theirs, that it’s the world supply of nickel.

Mr. Lewis: They control the markets for heaven’s sake; of course they do.

Mr. Laughren: We know that with rational production levels this need never have happened; with no government grants, concessions or exemptions. In the first nine months of this year Inco earned about $95 million. They received $70 million from the Export Development Corporation in Ottawa to finance their Guatemala operations.

How’s that for sanity in resource development and preservation of jobs in this country? That’s the kind of contradictions that we have between the Liberals in Ottawa and the Conservatives here.

It’s not just that they’re presiding over silly policies; it’s not that they have just been a passive observer; through their exemptions and allowances they’ve aided and abetted in the process. We simply cannot continue to finance the increased demand for social services while we export resources that have not had sufficient wealth added to them from the processing. That’s simply got to come to an end; and it should be clear now that that will never be done by the private sector, simply because it is not in their best interest.

I would like, in conclusion, to paraphrase the comments of a progressive Conservation Premier of this province back around 1905 or so when he was talking about water resources. It could very well apply to the nickel resources. He said that the water resources of Ontario should no longer be the sport and prey of capitalists, but rather a valuable resource for all the people of Ontario whose trustees members of this government are. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Bolan: Mr. Speaker, before making my general remarks on this topic I think I’d like to start off by asking, “Are we once again about to witness a strange phenomenon which every now and then occurs in northern Ontario; and that strange phenomenon is the death of an industry and the death of a community?” As testimony to this remark which I’ve just made, one only has to drive through northeastern Ontario to witness the remains of what were once proud and respected communities which stood on their own. These communities relied on natural resources, and as the resources which fed them diminished so did the communities themselves, to the point where they are today.

This, of course, was many years ago. This was in the days when it was an accepted axiom of government and business that when a community ran out of raw materials, it simply faded away. It was a very simplistic way of dealing with the problem at a time when governments did not have the ability, or the mechanisms or the desire or the resources, to deal with complexities of such magnitude.


With the announcement yesterday that Inco would lay off 2,200 hourly-paid and staff employees by the end of January, 1978, you have the beginning of one of the most devastating catastrophes ever to hit northeastern Ontario. Most of the people affected by this layoff are young men and young women; young people who have recently entered the labour market, young people with families to be concerned about, young people who have just bought a home and who now may be faced with the prospect of losing it.

What concerns me most are those 2,200 human beings who in this age of uncertainty find themselves without jobs, 2,200 young people who want to work but who are now being denied that opportunity.

One of the greatest perpetrators of this deed which is about to bring economic disaster to the Sudbury basin is the provincial government of the day, and indeed the provincial government of the past six years. The warning flags have been up for some time that all was not well in the nickel-copper industry of this province. The government was aware of it, and if it was not then it was derelict in its duty in not finding out.

I address myself to the Minister of Labour, who is not in her seat, and I ask the question:

How long has the Ministry of Labour been aware of this potential layoff? What role has the employment adjustment service of the ministry played in this; and what does it intend to do about it now, other than to describe the inanities which have been put forward to this House?

The employment adjustment service was established in 1973 in response to the need to assist labour, management and the government to anticipate and respond more effectively to manpower adjustment problems. Is this service adequately prepared at this time to cope with a layoff of this dimension?

What do we do about the 2,200 people who will be laid off? The fact still remains that the Sudbury basin has some of the infrastructure and the support required to accommodate stability and growth, and above all it has the human resources to fill jobs. That being the case, every effort should be made to get new jobs into the area.

For years our party has been advocating the decentralization of government offices and their transfer to other parts of the province. We recently had a new ministry created, the Ministry of Northern Affairs. Sudbury would have been the ideal location for the new ministry offices.

Mr. Martel: No, don’t give them to us.

Mr. Bolan: Instead, the head offices are in Toronto and you have two satellite offices -- one in Sault Ste. Marie and one in Kenora. Why were not all of these offices set up in northern Ontario?

Mr. Martel: There’s 30 jobs for us.

Mr. Laughren: Got another 30?

Mr. Bolan: When will the government provide the DREE grants that are necessary for the Eldorado refinery to be built in either Spragge or Burwash? What has the government done about creating a department of mines in Sudbury? Is there any reason why more Ministry of Natural Resources offices can’t be located in Sudbury?

During the next few months, the government should embark on a plan to restructure growth and development, not only in the Sudbury basin but also in northeastern Ontario. It should embark on a plan to urge and assist primary and secondary industries to locate in this area. Does the government have some kind of plan to assist the many people who will be required to relocate in other parts of the province or in other parts of the country? I’m thinking of such assistance as the cost of relocation and moving expenses.

In view of the already depressed nature of the housing industry, what assistance is the government prepared to give to the many people who will be required to sell their homes at a loss? Many of these young people who are being laid off bought their homes in good faith with the idea to continue to work at Inco, and now they find themselves left out in the cold.

There’s a very interesting document which was prepared some time ago by the Sudbury and District Chamber of Commerce. It’s called, “A Profile in Failure.” I understand the Treasurer (Mr. McKeough) had some difficulty in going through it. Perhaps he might want to try to read it again to adopt some of the policies which are recommended by the chamber.

Lastly, I address myself to the people of Sudbury and to those people of my own riding who are also affected by these layoffs. To these people I say this: The hour may be dark, but through it all they will somehow come through, because with the strong will and determination of which northerners are made they will overcome this abysmal moment. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Laughren: We have gone that route before.

Mr. Deans: Why do you have to keep doing it time after time?

Mr. Acting Speaker: The hon. Minister of Northern Affairs.

Mr. Deans: Disaster speaks.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: Mr. Speaker, as a northerner, as a person who was born, raised and lived in the north and represents a riding that is resource based, and having lived in a community that is resource based and suffered through the problems that Sudbury is facing today, I join this emergency debate with a great deal of enthusiasm.

The reduction in employment at Inco Metals in Sudbury by 2,800 jobs, 2,200 of them through layoff by the end of January and the rest apparently by attrition by mid-1978, is an extremely serious blow to the Sudbury area, and to the workers and families who are directly affected. This is one of the painful and frustrating aspects of the economy of northern Ontario, underscoring as it does the vulnerability of our resource-based industry to world commodity market conditions.

Mr. Laughren: Always the apologist.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: I am speaking today as the Minister of Northern Affairs, and while my first concern is for the welfare of the people in the communities of the north, I must also recognize that all the people of Ontario are directly affected by what is happening in our nickel industry.

Apart from the automobile industry, the mining industry accounts for 25 per cent of foreign exports of Ontario. The money which flows back to Canada helps all of us in every part of this province to enjoy a more rewarding standard of living. It is not just the mine and the smelter workers at Sudbury who will suffer; we are all affected and we must all contribute to a solution.

I might say that I have been searching, in the hours and the minutes previous to my remarks here, to see if there is some solution and some ideas coming forth from the other side of the House, and I have to admit I have yet to perceive any concrete evidence that they have contributed something of a positive nature.

Mr. Warner: Get someone to read Hansard to you.

Mr. S. Smith: What about stopping the foreign operations?

Mr. Acting Speaker: Order.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: I know it is difficult for many members of the House and their constituents across Ontario to even think of difficulties in the mining industry, since it has always been such a strong and prosperous part of our economy.

Mr. Warner: If you prefer to apologize for the corporate pirates, go ahead.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: Years ago, when Canada provided up to 90 per cent of the world’s nickel, this was less of a problem.

Mr. Deans: Of course, that might have been when we should have moved.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: However, our share has now fallen to about 30 per cent and there are -- we must realize this -- 20 other major producers in the world today. The world economic slowdown, plus increased competition, have both contributed to the present problem.

I am informed that production cutbacks have already been made in such places as Australia and the French operations as well.

However, as serious as the current problem is -- and it is serious, make no mistake -- nevertheless I believe that some of the statements which have been made about Sudbury having its heart cut out and predictions that it will be on its back by 1979, are in danger of compounding the problem.

A time of setback, among people of determination such as the northerners are, should also be a time for a realistic assessment of our situation. Fortunately, the resource-based economy of the north, even though vulnerable to world market conditions, has sufficient variety to ensure continued overall strength. Its position is, in fact, one of great strength.

I’d like to quote a brief paragraph from the Wall Street Journal of today, October 21, which says:

“While metal markets have been weak for the past three years, Inco has steadfastly maintained the policy since 1975 of continuing high levels of production and building inventories for an expected surge in demand which has not materialized.”

Mr. Laughren: By choice.

Mr. Martel: Carter gave that statement.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: The prospects at Elliot Lake look particularly good, with long-term production planned well into the next century. Gold prices are strengthening and the soft wood lumber industry has had an excellent summer, because housing starts in the United States have been unusually high and domestic production has not been good. The demand for Ontario lumber has been strong and prices have been excellent. We are heading into the expected seasonal downward trend, but the prospects for soft wood lumber are very good.

In addition, the longer-term prospects for Sudbury itself remain very strong. Predictions are that the demand for nickel will once more expand greatly by the early 1980s. It should be noted that the mines being closed are being maintained. This is an important point. Those mines that are being closed are being maintained on a standby basis and will be ready for reopening when market conditions permit.

Unemployment in the Sudbury area has been running at an unacceptably high level and this cutback will make it even worse. However Sudbury is far from dead. Its skilled and industrious work force, and its efficient mining and processing facilities, put it in an excellent position to meet world competition once world demand picks up. Remember, there are still 50,000 jobs in Sudbury overall. After these layoffs, the mines and the smelter will still have a work force of approximately 20,000 people.

The Ministry of Northern Affairs is in the process of establishing an office in Sudbury to manage our regional priorities budget as it applies to all of northeastern Ontario. This budget is approximately $50 million for the purpose of stimulating economic growth and for the creation of jobs in northern Ontario.

Mr. Laughren: That will solve it. Thanks a lot.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: Our staff has been holding ongoing discussions with the regional municipality of Sudbury for the purpose of providing financial assistance to help the region carry out studies aimed at encouraging local production of products and services. We will also begin negotiations with DREE with a view to accelerating the essential investment in services and to promote industry and job creation projects in that particular community.

While the nickel industry is and will continue to be the cornerstone of the Sudbury economy, there is a strong and diversified secondary and tertiary industrial base there. It has a skilled and mobile work force, and the long-term future of the mining industry there is excellent. The problem we face today is for the short term, and we are taking steps to deal with it.

I think we are all encouraged by the decision of the federal government to relocate the taxation data centre from Ottawa to Sudbury. This will provide 110 permanent jobs and 1,400 temporary jobs.

Mr. Germa: Yes, all for miners.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: The annual payroll will he about $5 million.

Mr. Laughren: Do miners get those jobs?

Hon. Mr. Bernier: As my colleague the Minister of Labour pointed out yesterday, a number of us in the cabinet will be going to Sudbury shortly to meet with union leaders, mine officials and municipal leaders --

Mr. Foulds: Sixty of those jobs will be moved from Thunder Bay. You extract it from one part of the north to give it to another part of the north.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: -- to assess the situation to receive first-hand reports and proposals and discuss ways in which we can assist further.

Our government will also make representations to the Environmental Assessment Board and Atomic Energy of Canada Limited to request an early resolution of the radon gas issue at Elliot Lake and the provision of necessary safeguards so that planned expansion of employment can proceed in that area.

As the minister responsible for Ontario Northland Transportation Commission, I am ready to enter into any serious discussions about any modes of transportation to match jobs with people using our facilities of trains, buses and aircraft. The series of initiatives which this government has taken in northern Ontario over the past few years, by the establishment of the new Ministry of Northern Affairs --

Mr. Foulds: That was some climax.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: -- has been a tangible demonstration of our faith and commitment to the people of the north.

Mr. Deans: That’s nonsense.


Hon. Mr. Bernier: Certainly the problems of the nickel industry, which we have not been accustomed to expect, are a painful setback for all of us.

Mr. Laughren: We are embarrassed by you. The albatross of the north.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: However, we have a lot going for us in northern Ontario. We have people of faith, of determination and of energy who are capable of overcoming adversity.

Mr. Warner: Put on a happy face.

Mr. S. Smith: All you lack is leadership. The ingredients are there but the cook isn’t.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: We have a resource base. I invite the Leader of the Opposition to come to northern Ontario and visit with me. Let him come and see the enthusiasm of those communities. We have a resource base which we are going to develop for the benefit of all the people of this particular province. We have a government with a commitment to the north and a capacity to help the people there to realize their fulfillment.

Finally, only someone who doesn’t know the north, or a pessimist, would have one think that adversity can cut the heart of any part of northern Ontario; but they have never seen or felt that heart.

Mr. Deans: Oh stop it, Leo; that’s just nonsense.


Mr. Germa: Mr. Speaker, it’s a little difficult to rise on this subject matter. As a long-time worker at Inco, I have been through this many times in a long career in this kind of an industry. My father went through it, as well as my grandfather. The contribution which this one family has made in the production of wealth and the development of the city of Sudbury -- this contribution has no recognized equity whatsoever, as far as Inco is concerned, or as far as the government of Ontario is concerned.

It is obvious from the statements here today by the Minister of Northern Affairs and the Minister of Labour, and the Premier, in fact, that the meeting with Inco was a disaster, because none of these three honourable people chose to report and tell us exactly what transpired, other than to say that Inco said, “We were a bunch of fine fellows and we’ll work very hard and we’re very industrious.” The minister didn’t tell us what position they put to Inco, what demands they made upon Inco and what were its responses.

Mr. S. Smith: That’s right.

Mr. Germa: All they came to us with was -- and from three sources, I get this same message -- that they do not understand, and they fail to understand, and I can recognize why they do not understand, what is going on in northern Ontario and in the city of Sudbury, because they do not have someone on their benches who understands the mining industry, who has ever participated in the mining industry, including that man there who has mined northern Ontario, the former Minister of Natural Resources and now the Minister of Northern Affairs.

There’s the popular mythology coming from across the floor that we are still a bunch of packsack miners in Sudbury and in northern Ontario. In fact, all we have to do is put our junk in our packsacks and wander off to Elliot Lake, or wander up to Kirkland Lake --

Hon. B. Stephenson: That may be your impression, but it isn’t mine.

Mr. Germa: -- or wander here, there and everywhere. That might have been true at the turn of the century. Fortunately, that has gone for most of us. I was born and raised in that city, and my mother was born and raised in that city some 80 years ago. We are no longer packsack transient miners and should not be treated like that any further.

We have the same feelings of insecurity as those people who live down in the southern part of the province. Yet we haven’t got something to attach that security to. We do not have land, as the farm grants security to the people in the farming communities of southern Ontario. All we have is our contribution to the mining company and their contribution to the wealth and the prosperity of Ontario. And yet the government gives us no recognition. “Just pack your packsacks and away you go, boys, to Elliot Lake.”

Hon. B. Stephenson: What an idiotic reaction.

Mr. Germa: The members know what happened in Elliot Lake. We did that about 10 or 15 years ago. You remember when Elliot Lake had 30,000 souls in it. We sank 14 shafts when we should have sunk only four shafts -- lack of planning by this government, and this gang was in power then. Then all of a sudden the bottom fell out of the barrel there.

A particular friend of mine, a person who worked in the industry in Sudbury, was attracted to Elliot Lake because of the availability of jobs. When he left Elliot Lake, he sold his $19,000 equity in a home he had acquired for exactly $1. He got $1 for his total investment in his home in Elliot Luke. Why did he bother selling it for $1? Just to secure his name with Central Mortgage and Housing so that he might go back some day and get a loan, in case he got located somewhere else, because if Central Mortgage forecloses on you, you cannot ever get another loan. Those are the kinds of things the government has been perpetrating on the people who choose to participate in the mining in Sudbury.

The local union in the area had a premonition that the curtain was coming down, because of the attrition which has been going on in Inco since the first of the year. They saw that Inco was not hiring or replacing those people who were leaving due to quits, deaths or pensions, and they did make a proposal to Inco. These are the kinds of things I hoped the people who met with Inco yesterday would have proposed.

Mr. Laughren: Fat chance.

Mr. Germa: The local union has proposed that there be some changes in the pension plan to encourage those people with long seniority to get out of the road, because 65 years old is just a little bit too old for a guy to be down there. I think it’s a little difficult even for a 20-year-old guy down there. But here we have people still underground at age 65, because the pension is not adequate to encourage them to remove themselves from the work force to make room for those younger guys who are a little bit stronger and who really need the job more than the person with age and seniority.

The subject of overtime seems to be a rather simple one that this government could approach Inco with. You could even approach it on the floor of this Legislature.

Hon. B. Stephenson: We did.

Mr. Germa: Why didn’t the minister tell us what the response was? You see, she failed to report what she did. We sent her to Inco yesterday and she came back to give us a hunch of gobbledegook about Ontario being strong, that northerners are tough and we shall survive.

Mr. Lewis: Because they went on their hands and knees. Prostrate, the minister went to Inco. Crawling to Inco.

Hon. B. Stephenson: I would never prostrate myself. Certainly not to you.

Mr. Martel: No -- to Inco.

Hon. B. Stephenson: Not to Inco, either.

Mr. Lewis: Oh, yes you did.

Mr. Acting Speaker: Order, please.

Mr. Germa: All you brought back was “Pack your packsack.”

Hon. B. Stephenson: You weren’t listening. Just open your ears.

Mr. Germa: All she failed to say was, “Will the last guy out turn out the lights?” For Christ’s sake, that’s all she got left for us. Pack your packsack and turn off the lights. She is a disaster. There’s no use sending a boy to do a man’s job. I don’t know why we sent her down there yesterday.

Hon. B. Stephenson: Right. I am not a boy nor a man.

Mr. Germa: I would like to have been a fly on the wall in Inco’s boardroom yesterday, sitting on that mahogany --

Hon. B. Stephenson: You haven’t used your eyes, let alone ears.

Mr. Germa: -- and listening and watching her kotow with her cap in hand. It would have been good. And that fellow over there --

Mr. S. Smith: Why can’t the Arabs and the Jews settle their differences in a Christian manner?

Mr. Germa: -- standing there with cap in hand, bowing to these potentates. I know how you treat those birds.

Hon. B. Stephenson: How?

Mr. Germa: Why didn’t you do something about the overtime which is presently being worked at Inco?

Hon. B. Stephenson: That was one of the questions that was raised.

Mr. Germa: What’s happened? Why doesn’t she tell us? Is she ashamed?

Mr. Acting Speaker: Order, please.

Mr. Germa: Why didn’t she tell us when she had her time on the floor?

Mr. Acting Speaker: Will the member please continue. I would ask him not to ask questions and I ask the members on the government side not to respond to rhetorical questions. The member for Sudbury, please continue.

Mr. Germa: I don’t expect an answer to the question because this person had plenty of opportunity to give us those answers when they were put to her yesterday. She failed, she was a disaster, and she should not be sent on any other mission of such a crucial nature.

Hon. B. Stephenson: Good, fine.

Mr. Germa: Of course, there might be some political reality to consider because this government has, of course, nothing to lose in the riding of Sudbury, Sudbury East or Nickel Belt. Is that why it can accept this major decision by this company so calmly? It is not concerned about it because it has no political gain to make there, no political losses to suffer.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: What are you doing about it in Manitoba?

Hon. B. Stephenson: What an asinine remark.

Hon. Mr. Davis: That’s very cheap.

Mr. Germa: You know it’s true.

Hon. Mr. Davis: That’s cheap.

Mr. Germa: Everything this government does has political content.

An hon. member: It certainly does.

Mr. Germa: They do nothing unless they count ballots, and I’ve seen that during my time; that’s how callous this government is.

An hon. member: You and every ministry.

Hon. B. Stephenson: Absolute utter nonsense.

Mr. Acting Speaker: Order, please.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Bud, you may work that way in public accounts, but we don’t.

Mr. Germa: Another question that should have been raised concerned bonus workers underground in the mine. You know what this does to production. Bonus is probably one of the most destructive things that still permeates the mining business. We’ve got rid of bonus payments in most other industries and yet it persists in the mining community.

I think bonus should be abolished from the underground process because this drives a person into overproduction. It also is the reason for many of the accidents and the high injury rates that we have underground.

Special vacations should also have been discussed with Inco. These are the things that my union has been raising with Inco since June, July and August. The union cannot get an answer from Inco on these five basic points.

I was hoping that the full weight of this government, as the member of the Liberal Party said, would be brought to bear. They are the greatest bunch of lightweights I ever saw. There isn’t a heavyweight on that side of the bench.

Mr. Cassidy: All dead weights.

Mr. Peterson: I wouldn’t say that.

Mr. Germa: You didn’t raise the proper issues. You went in and commiserated with men about the deteriorating world market --

Hon. B. Stephenson: Were you there?

Mr. Germa: -- which Inco participated in producing. It was Inco and Falconbridge that created the glut on the market.

So we really haven’t got any information; but those are five points that you can still keep in your bonnet.

Hon. B. Stephenson: Or my cap -- which?

Mr. Germa: And if you ever get back to talk to the boys in their boardroom you might raise those points.

There is one more thing I want to raise. I am in the position now of a person in a lower room when a fellow above drops the first shoe.

Mr. Acting Speaker: I would point out to the member for Sudbury that his time has expired,

Mr. Germa: Just for one moment. The person is waiting for the second shoe to drop. What I am waiting for is this whole subject matter of deep sea bed mining to arise. Did you talk to Inco about deep sea mining? What is going to happen to the community of Sudbury when deep sea nickel nodules start coming to shore?

Mr. Haggerty: Mr. Speaker, I want to add some remarks this morning and to express my views concerning the recent Inco Metals announcement of the massive layoff in the Sudbury basin and in the Port Colborne area too. It amounts to about some 3,200 employees across the province of Ontario.

I stand before the House not representing northern Ontario or southern Ontario but representing members of the Legislative Assembly, all of the province of Ontario. I am deeply concerned about the situation in the city of Port Colborne and the Sudbury basin and I stand here this morning to support my leader’s comments relating to the Inco operations in other countries throughout the world.

Perhaps much of this problem has been caused by the surplus of nickel in Canada and throughout the world. My leader is right when he talks about the wealth taken from this province to assist other countries in the development of their industries. Too often as politicians we seem to forget that labour is the father and the active principle of wealth. Much of this wealth has been taken from the province of Ontario to establish new industries throughout the world for the Inco operations --

Mr. Foulds: How can you say that and be a Liberal?

Mr. Haggerty: -- and this no doubt will add further to the surplus of nickel products throughout the world. I think it will have a serious impact further on -- perhaps in the year 1978. Reading from the news release from Walter Gray representing Inco Metals --

Mr. Lewis: He used to represent the Algonquin Wildlands League.

Mr. Haggerty: -- it says: “They are designed to ensure a meaningful reduction in 1978 of nickel inventories which we have built up, beginning in 1975, by maintaining Inco production in the communities in which we operate at levels well above levels of Inco sales. However, further production cutbacks may be required. These will be made if and when indicated and could occur in the first half of 1978.”

Hopefully there are government members, the ministers on the other side, who will have more dialogue with Inco Metals concerning their future productions in the Sudbury basin and the nickel refinery in the city of Port Colborne and the operations in Manitoba.

I want to add a few more comments relating from “Reaffirming Ontario’s Budget Strategy for 1977” by the Treasurer of Ontario. On page 14, in the conclusion of this report, he says: “The government’s budget plan for 1977 implements a fiscal policy appropriate to the needs of the Ontario economy, and makes wise use of our financial resources. The economic outlook is steadily improving, assisted by built-in fiscal stimulus in excess of $1 billion.” It goes on to say, “lower interest rates and recovery of the economy of the United States.”

How often have I stood in this House and said that if we have to depend upon the economy of Ontario based upon the economy of the United States we are wishful thinkers, because it is not going to happen. It goes on to say: “I believe this recovery trend will continue throughout the year and into 1978. I will be monitoring the situation closely and I am prepared to consider supplementary action to stimulate the economy in selective areas.”

Let’s see what he is going to do with the city of Port Colborne which has had to absorb the loss of the Algoma Steel industry. They closed their plant down. The Treasurer says:


“This government’s record of achievement in fiscal and economic policy is second to none. In 1971 and again in 1975, Ontario led the way in Canada in the early and timely implementation of expansionary fiscal policy to stimulate economic growth and to create a great number of new job opportunities our people demanded. We have shown equally good judgement in recognizing the threat of inflation and in bringing forward policies to protect our high standard of living and enhance our bountiful opportunities.”

When one reads that quotation, I wonder what the government is going to do in this situation. The experts in the economic field have already indicated that there is no upswing in the Canadian economy, not even in the province of Ontario. So no doubt about it, we are going to have to look for some drastic action from the government to bring in an employment strategy program. This is something the Minister of Labour has referred to in the past, but we haven’t seen anything in that line whatsoever.

We have no economic policy for an employment program in Ontario, based upon those comments I have just spoken of.

Mr. S. Smith: No industrial strategy.

Mr. Haggerty: No industrial strategy whatsoever, and there is no outlook for any such a program.

Mr. Breithaupt: Not since the day of Jack McNie.

Mr. Haggerty: We have had no dialogue with industry in the province of Ontario, as was indicated by the Minister of Labour this morning. All of a sudden everybody wants to jump on the bandwagon and meet with Inco Metals because of this layoff. The ministers didn’t think about that when the first notice of a layoff in September had affected the employees of Inco’s refinery in Port Colborne. There was nothing mentioned about that. They had warnings then, a month ago, and they have warnings now, by the press release from Inco Metals, that there will no doubt be a further layoff in 1978 unless economic conditions change in the metal industry in Ontario and throughout the world.

Perhaps one of the things that caused the problem of Inco’s sales of nickel relates to the collapse of the steel industry in the United States, and Mr. Speaker, I want to quote to you an article from the Globe and Mail of October 14, 1977. This related to the St. Lawrence Seaway tolls, and Mr. John Childe, general manager of the International Great Lakes Shipping Company, was presenting a brief to the hearings in Washington. The article says:

“The port economies would lose that amount because proposed toll increases on steel and steel products would drive shippers away from the St. Lawrence Seaway to east coast or Gulf of Mexico ports,” he said.

“The toll for moving a ton of steel through the Seaway would rise to $1.95 from 90 cents.

“This year,” he said, “1.4 million tons of Far East steel moved into Great Lakes ports, but Japanese shippers predict 80 to 90 per cent of their steel would be diverted to Gulf ports.”

He goes on to talk about losing 200,000 tons of steel that would normally be brought into North American cities and ports. Look at the situation in the United States, in particular as it relates to Buffalo, NY, which I live close to. They have massive unemployment in the steel industry there. I understand that Youngstown, Ohio, has almost collapsed because of the cutbacks in the steel industry in the United States.

The point I wanted to bring to the government’s attention is the matter of imports of metals into Canada and the United States. It’s happened to the United States, it could happen to Canada, and it could particularly happen to the industry in Ontario. A number of the government members were over in Japan on a trade mission and hopefully they are not going to bring in steel to the province of Ontario, because we can look to see the steel industry disappear too.

I think we should be looking for tariffs on steel and for other things to be increased to protect workers in Ontario and perhaps throughout Canada.

Perhaps to sum it up I should quote Walter Gordon, whom I strongly support in his views on Canada’s economic problems as they relate to foreign investments in Ontario and throughout Canada. He says: “Unless we regain control of the Canadian economy, we shall gradually and imperceptibly lose an increasing measure of our political as well as our economic independence.”

Based upon those comments, I suggest the government should be looking in that direction so that we, along with industry, do have control of Ontario’s economy. I don’t think that Inco, or any other company in Ontario, should have the right to put on the brakes or pull the plug and say, “We’re going to have a layoff.” Those days should be gone. Government must come through with an economic strategy of job employment to protect workers.

Mr. Acting Speaker: I must inform the hon. member his time has expired.

Mr. Haggerty: It’s regrettable that those persons working in the industry, particularly at Inco Metals in Port Colborne, who I know very well and who thought they had job security, went out and purchased homes and other goods and now all of a sudden, there are no jobs for them. It’s time that we as members of the Legislature forgot about politics and got on with the business of creating job enrichment programs for the people of Ontario.

Hon. F. S. Miller: Mr. Speaker, this is the kind of issue which probably polarizes the Legislature more than most issues we discuss here. If I tried to synopsize what I’ve heard from the previous speakers today and put them into parties, I would say from the NDP we’ve heard “nationalize” and from the Liberals we’ve heard “gloom and doom” -- or perhaps a variation of “Stop the world, I want to get off.”

Mr. S. Smith: The Tories are the government; let them stop it.

Hon. Mr. Kerr: How? If they say no, what do we do?

Mr. Acting Speaker: Order, please.

Hon. F. S. Miller: In the title of a book, “Stop the World, I Want To Get Off” -- that was the attitude taken, I thought.

Mr. S. Smith: The minister is a multinational apologist.


Mr. Acting Speaker: Order, please.

Hon. Mr. Kerr: If the Liberals are in favour of nationalizing, let them say it. If they say no, what do we do?

Mr. Acting Speaker: Could I ask the members to give their attention to the hon. minister?

Hon. F. S. Miller: I have too much respect for the intelligence and the honesty of the leader of the NDP not to believe that he believes what he said today.

Mr. Lewis: I believe -- certainly.

Hon. F. S. Miller: I accept that. I don’t find it hypocritical at all. I find it difficult to reconcile with some of the statements he made earlier. For example -- I’d like to quote him: “I haven’t the slightest intention of bringing any of the major sectors of the natural resource area under public ownership. It doesn’t make sense to me.”

Mr. Lewis: That’s right.

Ms. Gigantes: Some companies --

Mr. Lewis: And in this instance I say they have gone too far.

Mr. Kerrio: That’s what is called a flip-flop.

Mr. Lewis: No, it isn’t.

Mr. Acting Speaker: Order, please.

Hon. F. S. Miller: It is simply a quotation I recall having been made to which his colleague, the hon. member for Sudbury East, replied: “I personally was one unhappy with Stephen’s statement. I wished he would have been frank and said, ‘We’re talking about development and exploration by a Crown corporation and the development of new mines by the government of Ontario.’”

If nothing else, this issue has brought those two points out into the open and has made it obvious that the NDP would nationalize all the resource industries in the province of Ontario.

Mr. Deans: It is quite obvious the government doesn’t have a policy.

Hon. Mr. Bernier: There is an internal fight over there --

Mr. Acting Speaker: Order, please. The minister has the floor.

Hon. F. S. Miller: At the same time, respecting the intelligence of the leader of the official opposition I can’t believe he really means what he said today. I can’t believe he thinks that in a world with as many suppliers of nickel, in a world with as many sources of capital today, he really thinks a company like Inco can say, “If we don’t develop the resources of Indonesia, no one else will.” That is just sheer poppycock. It’s sheer idealism, a sheer finger-in-the-dike attitude; that’s all that is.

Mr. S. Smith: We can’t compete in that market!

Hon. F. S. Miller: Sir, I was quiet while the hon. member spoke.

Mr. S. Smith: The minister obviously wasn’t listening.

Hon. F. S. Miller: I was listening; I was shocked. I bet his own party was shocked. I saw some of them starting to move out to the back. Let’s realize, though, if I am sad about anything, it is --

Mr. S. Smith: Sudbury first.

Hon. F. S. Miller: -- if I could quote one of the members who spoke earlier -- the Pavlovian reaction, perhaps of all of us, to a set of preconceived ideas as to what is the cause and how one resolves it.

Ms. Gigantes: It is not a psychological problem.

Mr. Laughren: Stop preaching.

Hon. F. S. Miller: I’m not preaching. I’m looking for solutions; I think that’s the key thing we all have to look for in a case like this.

Mr. Warner: It’s the government that is closing the mines.

Hon. F. S. Miller: We have to assess the world situation, assess our part in it and determine what in fact we can do to maximize employment and the creation of wealth in our province.

Mr. Foulds: Tell us.

Hon. F. S. Miller: Throughout the remarks of the previous speakers, there was often the comment that wealth has been taken out of Ontario and put somewhere else. My friends, that wealth was created in Ontario by the creation of those mines. Until such time as the men, the capital and the effort was put there, nothing came out of this country.

Mr. Lewis: It doesn’t become wealth until the workers produce it, for heaven’s sake.

Hon. F. S. Miller: I’m interested in the 92.5 per cent of the wealth created by the mines in this province which stays with us, which stays with our workers, which stays with the government of this province --

Mr. Warner: Nonsense.

Hon. F. S. Miller: -- which prevents us from having to have welfare programs to support unemployed people. I’m interested in finding ways and means of making sure these people have jobs in the future.

Mr. S. Smith: Very naive.

Hon. F. S. Miller: Perhaps I am. I happen at least to represent the government in this issue.

Mr. S. Smith: You do, but you’re both naive.

Hon. F. S. Miller: Let’s look at a couple of the problems. First of all, we, and I’m sure all of us, have been aware of the problems of the nickel market in the last few months, in fact, the last couple of years. Companies have learned to live, as you’ve all admitted, with the cyclical nature of the business. There were good years -- 1974 was a top-grade year -- and there have been bad years -- 1976 and 1977.

Companies have learned to try to level their production for the sake of their profits, of course, and also for the sake of their employee work force because we admit that there are highly competent people working in Sudbury. Probably the most skilled and probably the most efficient miners in the whole world live in that area --

Mr. Laughren: Look at the way they’re being rewarded.

Hon. F. S. Miller: -- and they deserve protection and they deserve our support.

Mr. Lewis: This is their reward.

Hon. F. S. Miller: Companies have tried then to estimate sales and to produce so that when the inevitable upswing occurred they would have had no more than an adequate inventory. The figure is roughly $1 billion worth of nickel that is sitting in storage in Ontario. I don’t know how much copper because we tend to forget Inco produces as much copper pound for pound as it produces nickel. Both of those metals have been down of late.

I would assume that is costing them between $80 million and $100 million a year in interest charges alone at the present time. Having realized that the market in the last few months has dropped precipitously, I suppose that was the cause for the action. They might have turned then and said, “Let’s look overseas and see what we could do. Let’s stop offshore processing. Let’s stop investment in new capacity overseas.” As far as the offshore processing is concerned, the whole nickel market has changed in the last few years. Instead of requiring entirely refined nickel, the steel companies of the world can handle other materials.

Mr. S. Smith: Seventy-five per cent matte.

Hon. F. S. Miller: Sure, matte. No argument at all. We, in turn, are recognizing that. At the same time, to assume that if we didn’t allow the matte or some of these products to leave under section 113 of the Act we would somehow be protecting jobs here, I think is a wee bit naive, because the other sources of supply are immediately there to take up the slack now that other sources are available.

Mr. Laughren: Where were you then?

Mr. Lewis: It is now too late.

Hon. F. S. Miller: No, it isn’t. It’s never too late.

Mr. Lewis: Ten years ago the Minister of Northern Affairs threw it away.

Hon. F. S. Miller: You fellows have preached consistently that nothing should be shipped out unless it was totally processed. What we have done, through our tax plan --

Mr. Martel: You have allowed everything to be shipped out unprocessed.

Hon. F. S. Miller: -- we have created incentives to smelt and refine in northern Ontario and those tax incentives are very real. In the most recent case, Texasgulf, have caused a major industry to be built as a result of them. They are creating employment in northern Ontario and will continue to do.

Mr. Martel: What did Falconbridge do to you?

Mr. Kerrio: How can you criticize what our leader did?

Hon. F. S. Miller: As far as overseas new capacity goes, let’s realize that when Indonesia, for example, was proposed -- not by us, not by Inco, but by, I believe, the state of Indonesia -- they asked for a number of companies to enter into the agreement. Which is better in that instance? To put $1 from Canada with, say, $3 or $4 of foreign currency and, therefore, have an interest in overseas operations which easily could have gone to Russia, which easily could have gone to other foreign countries?

Mr. Lewis: Oh, this is Inco protecting the free world, is it?

Hon. F. S. Miller: Not necessarily protecting the free world --

Mr. Lewis: Making Indonesia safe for democracy.

Hon. F. S. Miller: -- but I have heard a great deal from the socialists over the years of our responsibility towards underdeveloped nations.

Mr. Lewis: Inco is being responsible to Indonesia by wrecking their economy?

Hon. F. S. Miller: I said “our responsibility.” We have that responsibility and we are living up to it.

Mr. Lewis: It is a new definition of the multinational ethic.

Hon. F. S. Miller: It is better to have our own corporations with some interest and with their expertise in these world markets, protecting Canadian interests rather than competing with a Zaire-like copper economy --

Mr. Foulds: How are they our own corporations?

Hon. F. S. Miller: -- where the sole purpose of the generation or sale of that material is to generate foreign hard currency.

Mr. Foulds: They don’t consult with you. They don’t let you know ahead of time. You have no control over them.

Hon. F. S. Miller: At least, in this case, we would say there was more chance for that kind of thing to happen.


Mr. S. Smith: We agree.

Mr. Foulds: It is not called International Nickel for nothing.

Hon. F. S. Miller: No argument -- and thank goodness, I understand more of the shares are held by Canadians than by any other race in the world. That didn’t used to be so but I’m told it is now true.

Mr. Martel: They’re widely held.

Hon. F. S. Miller: In summary, you really can’t sell what the market won’t buy. We have watched these companies struggle and we, in turn, are going to do our best to ensure that we work hard to protect the workers in that area --

Mr. Martel: Struggle?

Hon. F. S. Miller: -- by finding ways and means of stimulating their future.

Mr. Lewis: This is obscene.

Mr. Martel: Mr. Speaker, I want to tell you that I’ve watched Inco struggle from the year I worked there in 1954 when they made a $90 million profit. They’ve been struggling with that type of profit ever since.

Hon. F. S. Miller: Then you had better hope they keep making it.

Mr. Martel: The interesting part about these layoffs is that the only people who could match Inco and Falconbridge are the government of Ontario when they closed Burwash. Overnight, the fourth largest employer moved out and Potter said “we don’t run an employment agency,” and 250 jobs were moved out. The government is to be complimented for that.

Mr. Deans: You don’t even run a government.

Mr. Laughren: Real policy.

Mr. Martel: There are two solutions to this problem. The short term: I suggested to the Minister of Natural Resources on September -- and to this date he hasn’t had the courage even to respond to the correspondence -- that in the short term the government should enact legislation which matched --

Hon. F. S. Miller: On a point of privilege.

Mr. Martel: -- that which the United Auto Workers had worked out with the auto industry --

Hon. F. S. Miller: Call me anything you want but don’t use the words “lack of courage.”

Mr. Martel: Why not?

Ms. Gigantes: When it’s true?

Mr. Martel: What did it demonstrate? Mr. Speaker, let me continue. I suggested then that we enact legislation similar to that between the UAW and the auto producers where the mining companies would have to contribute to a fund which they would build up and if the men were laid off because of bad production planning, they would then be forced to give an additional 30 per cent over and above the unemployment insurance benefits to that group of workers.

If you want to rationalize the mining industry, rather than give them our shirt, it’s time that we did it that way. We tried it at Falconbridge. In 1975 we gave Falconbridge two further concessions. They expanded their operation in Norway as a result. What did that mean? Did it mean that they ever intended to produce or to refine in Ontario? No way. It meant that they were expanding that operation and we would suffer the consequence.

Two years later, Falconbridge shut down for a month and then laid off 350 men. Again the government demonstrated its lack of courage. It shut down in September when the union wanted it to shut the whole operation down while the men had vacation pay and could have taken a month off without losing a cent of salary. As it was, they lost two weeks’ salary and then they had to rely on the public treasury to give them two weeks’ unemployment insurance.

Where was this government? That announcement was made in the first week of August and the government was hiding its head in the sand like an ostrich. It could have moved in and said, “Wait a minute. Let’s take the shutdown when the men have vacation coming to them.” The Minister of Natural Resources demonstrated his courage. There was none. It was wanting.

The second solution, and I’m glad the Premier’s here because he smiles when we talk about nationalization over here.

Hon. Mr. Davis: No, your own leader smiled.

Mr. Martel: Let me tell you about your party. Let me tell you about your colleagues.

Mr. Lewis: I smiled at the explicit way he put it. That was fine.

Mr. Martel: I sat on a select committee --

Hon. Mr. Davis: Your colleagues behind you couldn’t see you smiling. I was smiling at you.

Mr. Martel: I sat on a select committee, Mr. Speaker, with your predecessor, who chaired the select committee on economic and cultural nationalism. Isn’t it interesting that seven Tories over there, five of them still in; two of them cabinet ministers; one just resigned because he didn’t agree with the Premier on something, the member for Carleton (Mr. Handleman); the Minister of Agriculture and Food (Mr. W. Newman); the former Speaker (Mr. Rowe) and two parliamentary assistants -- the member for Mississauga South (Mr. Kennedy) -- signed a document calling for a 50 per cent takeover of the natural resources of this province after three and a half years of study? We moved through six countries, including Germany, Sweden and England. Interestingly, in England we met with the minister responsible for resources --

Mr. S. Smith: Jet lag.

Mr. Martel: -- and this minister said: “We have taken 50 per cent of the shares in the oil industry, the best 50 per cent. That’s going to help us in the long run.” Do you know who that was, Mr. Speaker? A Tory cabinet minister, Chris Chataway, the long distance runner. And today it’s paying off handsomely.

As we moved around these countries, Mr. Speaker, your seven colleagues over there saw that no other country allowed international people to exploit the natural resources. It remains a national prerogative. In Germany, it was the Germans -- some of them free enterprisers but the government had a say. In Sweden the same. Outsiders did not exploit the natural resources in Sweden, nor in England. When we came back to Canada, let me quote what those same colleagues who helped to draft that report said in three very important positions in the select committee’s report: “The policy shift should not be one of discouragement of the resource development but an encouragement of manufacturing and processing in Canada.” We have done very little of that.

“One important goal of both provincial and federal resource policies should be the achievement of a strong and visible Canadian controlled presence in the non-renewable natural resource sector.”

Finally: “The government should be empowered to take up 50 per cent of the equity in new ventures in the non-renewable natural resource sector.”

Mr. Lewis: Right.

Mr. Martel: The minister’s colleagues signed that, and such is the hypocrisy of this government as it runs around at election time -- and this party, because my friend Dick Smith from Nipissing had more courage than most of them; he, along with my colleague from Wentworth, said: “Not 50 per cent, 100 per cent.” The Liberals, too, got in on the act. They played a game against the socialists over here, but they too signed that document calling for a 50 per cent takeover. In fact, the member for Nipissing called for a 100 per cent takeover.

Mr. Laughren: Not the new leader. He wants to give it away.

Mr. Martel: When we studied it, after three and a half years we came to the conclusion we could no longer export the jobs that go with the outflow of natural resources. We have warned this government as I have stood in this place for 10 long years --

Hon. B. Stephenson: Too long, Elie, too long.

Mr. Martel: It will never do anything about it. For 10 years I have argued with this government that it must change its policy on taxes to the mining industry, because we are usually getting less than one per cent return on the value of mineral production. There are no jobs. There are fewer jobs in the mining industry now, although we are producing more, than 10 years ago and it has done nothing to protect the work force.

It has done nothing to ensure jobs for our young people. It has allowed the natural resources, with all its exemptions, to continue to flow out and this is the consequence. If it does not start to process, if it does not get control of that industry, we will always, contrary to what Gillies says -- Jim Gillies, that great Tory says: “We should be proud to be drawers of water and hewers of wood,” and he has got the Leader of the Opposition (Mr. S. Smith) with him now. I don’t know if the leader spoke to the member for Erie (Mr. Haggerty), who, if we sent it out unprocessed would see Port Colborne close down totally.

Mr. S. Smith: It is already closing because the market has changed.

Mr. Martel: No, only partially, but I am saying that would close down. “We will send it out raw.” Well where do the jobs come from then? Where will the jobs which we could use those natural resources to create come from? As we become more capital intensive in that field --

Mr. S. Smith: We will refine nickel to stockpile it because no one will buy it?

Mr. Martel: -- there will be fewer and fewer and fewer jobs, as the statistics indicate today, unless this government acts; not in the way the Minister of Labour said -- as my colleague from Sudbury mentions -- “get a packsack and move.” That isn’t the approach we have to take. We have to get tough, and the sooner we do it the better, because in the long run that’s the only solution in the natural resource field.

Mr. S. Smith: Get tough for the right reason.

Mr. Martel: What? So we could spread poverty around?

Mr. Lewis: That’s right.

Mr. Martel: I suggest there is a short-term solution. It is that legislation be introduced next week bringing in a supplementary unemployment insurance benefit fund for those miners; it would give them an additional 30 per cent, as has been worked out with the auto industry. In the long term, take over 50 per cent of those mines, as called for by the minister’s colleagues, along with the members of the New Democratic Party and the Liberal Party, and then we can get on with doing some economic planning which will lead to jobs for the young people in the years to come.

Otherwise we are dead. The exploitation will continue and we will have nothing. We have seen it in the north for too long; ghost town after ghost town, without anything to take its place.

The government has a Ministry of Northern Affairs that could help. I moved three or four amendments --

Mr. Speaker: The hon. member’s time has expired.

Mr. Martel: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. When that bill came in, we moved three or four amendments which would have helped to resolve some of those problems, but the Tories rejected them all. The government is bankrupt. McKeough said it; there will be no manufacturing in the north for 20 years, the government is bankrupt.

Mr. Peterson: Mr. Speaker, I have about three minutes to wind up. I think this has been a fruitful and worthwhile debate, because I think people have been able to lay their positions, or lack thereof, very clearly around a specific issue. I think the problem has been expressed well in human terms, and I want you to know that our party associates itself in every respect with the human dislocations that are going to go on. We associate ourselves --

Mr. Deans: That is idle tripe.

Mr. Foulds: Yes, that is really nice. Send them a sympathy card.

Mr. Peterson: We associate ourselves with every constructive suggestion that will be arising. That concerns us very deeply. What troubles me so very much about this is that we are always so late in this business. The signals were there, they have been there since 1970.

Mr. Laughren: The feds helped a lot.

Mr. Peterson: The government had a clear responsibility in my judgement, to change a lot of its policies prior to this event that was sprung on members yesterday when suddenly, out of the sky, there is a layoff of a significant number of workers. That is the greatest tragedy, because the government, in its pure, doctrinaire capitalism, is afraid to get involved, to work with the industry and work with the workers to plan some sort of constructive strategy.

Our friends to the left revealed, in my judgement, a very serious lack of understanding of the world marketplace in the nickel processing industry -- the nickel smelting industry. It certainly does not conform with any of the research we have done. There are a lot of very aggressive nations in this world that are probably a hell of a lot smarter than we are, like Japan, that just won’t buy processed nickel. That just happens to be a reality.

We have an option at that point. Because they are tough, they do good central planning, they believe in free enterprise, and they are only going to buy a limited number of products, we have an option of getting the government involved; intelligently, through tariff policy, through assisting on export licences for various degrees of finished products --

Hon. Mr. Davis: Provincial tariff policy?

Mr. Peterson: Look, don’t give me that nonsense. We have lots of input into the federal government. We have the centre of the industry here --

Hon. Mr. Davis: Oh, yes, we have noticed it.

Mr. Peterson: We also happen to have the Mining Act here which has historically restricted some of the export of semi-finished product into foreign countries. The government should be, very clearly in my judgement --

Mr. Cassidy: What two-faced, two-headed people they are.

Mr. S. Smith: Oh, Cassidy, you are --

Mr. Peterson: -- looking at that Mining Act, looking at section 113, and should have contracts awarding specific exemptions to get that product rolling. In fairness, we find that governments of the world are working at cross purposes. Japan, for example --


Mr. S. Smith: They are not informed, they really are not.

Mr. Peterson: Members of the government just don’t understand. We find that the Japanese government, for example, only wants a specified product. The government of Ontario won’t allow that specified product to be shipped, so we end up doing nothing in the middle.

Where I think we have an obligation today is to do the best we can to be constructive towards the government. In my judgement, being constructive towards the government today is not saying “run out and buy 50 per cent of Inco.” That’s just silly. We haven’t got enough money for the things that are necessary today in this province, let alone going out and nationalizing the resource sector. If members look around the world where that is being done, there is no necessary benefit, no necessary increase in efficiency, or anything else.

It troubles me that this has become a less constructive debate, than I think it could have been, when it just revolved around the old polemic, the old line that comes up, always after the fact, in a debate of this type.

We very clearly accept our responsibility to protect the Sudbury basin. All of our policies there should be oriented towards that in the short run. We are not concerned particularly about Guatemala or Indonesia or anywhere else, and that’s where the Premier has to be concerned and all of his government has to be concerned.

We have specific suggestions -- I’m sorry I’m running overtime. The Speaker is getting mad at me.

Tomorrow morning the government can work on specific contracts to export specific quantities of various grades of ore to various countries. That is where it can participate tomorrow morning and it should be doing it.

Mr. Cassidy: What a sell-out.

Hon. B. Stephenson: They don’t want that; not right now they don’t.

Mr. Speaker: The time for this debate has expired.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, I understood from the whips there was a certain order of speakers. I would like, perhaps, with your indulgence then, on Monday, by way of a statement so that the rules will not be breached, just to sum up some of the observations and concerns that have been expressed on all sides of the House.

I would not want the members of the House to feel there weren’t some other suggestions to be put forward, or some observations made with respect to some of the observations emanating from the members opposite. I have not been provoked, but I just want to say, because I feel it very deeply, I resent the suggestions coming from the member for Sudbury East that in any way the fact that there are not government representatives in the Sudbury basin will --

Mr. Deans: What is this? What is going on here?

Mr. Martel: Well don’t accuse me. I represent Sudbury East.

Hon. Mr. Davis: No, I’m not accusing the member. I’m sorry, the member for Sudbury (Mr. Germa) -- whoever, you know to whom I am referring. I resent the suggestion that the attitude of this government, whatever policies, whatever it is we embark upon to assist the people in Sudbury in any way, will be tempered by the fact that he happens to represent that particular constituency. That has never been the position of this government.

Mr. Deans: On a point of order.

Hon. B. Stephenson: Why don’t you sit down?

Mr. Germa: Tell us about the Northern Affairs office.

Hon. Mr. Davis: We can demonstrate it time and time again. I want the public in Sudbury to know that in spite of what he says, we’re going to do our best to see that the people there do not suffer unnecessarily.

Mr. Speaker: Order, please. That’s starting a debate.

Mr. Deans: That’s out of order.

Hon. Mr. Davis: That’s on a matter of personal privilege then.

Mr. Speaker: The hon. member for Went- worth. Did you have a point of order?

Mr. Deans: I’d like to draw to your attention that since the time had expired the Premier had no right to continue to speak, sir; and your responsibility was to bring him to order.

Hon. Mr. MacBeth: Your leader went well over his time

Mr. Deans: I want to say, nevertheless, since you allowed and since the Premier feels that he would like to contribute to the debate on Monday, we would find quite acceptable a suggestion that this debate be continued for an hour on Monday and that other people be enabled to add to the debate and to contribute to the final outcome.

Mr. Breithaupt: Speaking to that point of order, Mr. Speaker, we have had, this morning, opportunity for three members of the cabinet to speak. I would certainly not wish in any way to preclude the Premier from making his particular comments. If it is agreeable to the members of the House, the Premier, if he has comments to make and if it is useful that they be made all at one time, will certainly have our consent to make a statement now.

Mr. Deans: He could have had the time of the Minister of Natural Resources. He didn’t say anything.

Mr. Speaker: The time for adjournment has now passed. Unless I get some direction from the House I will accept a motion to adjourn.

Mr. Breithaupt: That’s our suggestion, Mr. Speaker.

Hon. Mr. Davis: I shall be very brief, if it is the feeling of the members of the House that we might conclude this debate now rather than by way of, shall we say, a brief statement of 10 minutes on Monday.

Mr. Martel: Go ahead, but other people will speak.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, if it is the understanding that my contribution, short as it will be, then puts you in the position of other members wishing to speak, then I’ll be guided by what you say.

Mr. Breithaupt: Let’s hear it all now.

Mr. Speaker: Sessional order 30 specifically says that the debate will be concluded at 6 p.m. I take that to mean 1 p.m. on Friday. Without any specific direction from the House, I can only assume this debate has been concluded.

Mr. Breithaupt: I am prepared to move that the Premier be now heard.

Mr. Speaker: That would require unanimous consent.

Do we have unanimous consent?

Mr. Deans: Mr. Speaker, on a point of order. A motion to extend the sitting can only be made by the government House leader.

Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, I would be prepared to move that we extend the time for 10 minutes to allow the leader of the government of Ontario to participate in this debate.

Mr. Breithaupt: Agreed.

Mr. Martel: Mr. Speaker, I am going to move an amendment that we increase it to an hour to allow all those who want to participate to do so, and not just make a privileged position for the Premier.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Speaking to the motion proposed by the House leader I don’t want any privileged position. I did want to express some general observations.

Mr. Martel: I don’t want to put the Premier off.

Hon. Mr. Davis: In light of the amendment which the member for Sudbury East says he would offer on the motion from the House leader, we are withdrawing it. I will make a statement on Monday afternoon at 2 o’clock.

Mr. Breithaupt: I think it is regrettable that we will not have the opportunity to hear from the Premier.

Hon. Mr. Welch: I will move that we adjourn in order to wind up the debate in an intelligent fashion.

Mr. Deans: Who said it would be intelligent?

Mr. S. Smith: The man’s the Premier.

On motion by Hon. Mr. Welch the House adjourned at 1:02 p.m.