G001 - Mon 20 Oct 2014 / Lun 20 oct 2014



Monday 20 October 2014 Lundi 20 octobre 2014

Election of Chair

Election of Vice-Chair

Appointment of subcommittee


The committee met at 1406 in committee room 2.

Election of Chair

The Clerk of the Committee (Ms. Sylwia Przezdziecki): Good afternoon, honourable members. Welcome to the Standing Committee on General Government. It is my duty at this time to call upon you to elect the Chair of the committee. Are there any nominations? Ms. Kiwala.

Ms. Sophie Kiwala: I’d like to nominate Grant Crack.

The Clerk of the Committee (Ms. Sylwia Przezdziecki): Does the member accept the nomination?

Mr. Grant Crack: Yes.

The Clerk of the Committee (Ms. Sylwia Przezdziecki): Are there any further nominations? There being no further nominations, I declare the nominations closed and Mr. Crack elected Chair of the committee.

Congratulations, Mr. Chair. If you would come and take the chair.

The Chair (Mr. Grant Crack): Thank you very much, Madam Clerk.

Thank you to the members of the committee for placing your confidence in me to help guide the committee through our legislative agenda over the session. I welcome you all.

Election of Vice-Chair

The Chair (Mr. Grant Crack): At this particular point, I would say, honourable members, that we need to entertain filling the position of Vice-Chair. Are there any nominations?

Mr. Mike Colle: Mr. Chair, I’d like to nominate Joe Dickson for Vice-Chair.

The Chair (Mr. Grant Crack): Are the members ready to vote on the motion? Those in favour? Any opposed? Carried.

Congratulations, Mr. Dickson.

Appointment of subcommittee

The Chair (Mr. Grant Crack): We’ll move to the business of appointing members to the subcommittee on committee business. Is there a motion to make appointments to members of the subcommittee?

Ms. Lisa M. Thompson: Chair, I would like to make a motion.

The Chair (Mr. Grant Crack): MPP Thompson.

Ms. Lisa M. Thompson: I move that a subcommittee on committee business be appointed to meet from time to time at the call of the Chair, or at the request of any member thereof, to consider and report to the committee on the business of the committee;

That the presence of all members of the subcommittee is necessary to constitute a meeting; and

That the subcommittee be composed of the following members: the Chair as Chair, Mr. Colle, Mr. Yurek and Mrs. Gretzky; and

That substitution be permitted on the subcommittee.

The Chair (Mr. Grant Crack): Thank you very much. Any discussion or comments?

There being none, I shall put the question on the motion. Shall the motion carry? None opposed? Carried.


Ms. Lisa M. Thompson: Are we done?

The Chair (Mr. Grant Crack): We’re not quite done—just some formal introductions here.

We have with us Sylwia Przezdziecki, who is the Clerk, and Jerry Richmond, who is legislative research counsel. At this time, with the committee’s indulgence, I would ask perhaps if they would just address the committee to inform the new members, or some of the senior members as well, as to what their roles are. We’ll start with the clerk.

The Clerk of the Committee (Ms. Sylwia Przezdziecki): Thank you. Good afternoon. Once again, my name is Sylwia Przezdzieski. Jerry and I will just take a couple of minutes to talk about this committee and then, at the end, we’ll be happy to take any questions.

The Standing Committee on General Government is one of the so-called policy field committees, of which there are three. These receive the bulk of legislation introduced in the House, as well as any other matters referred by the House. The committee receives both government bills and private members’ public bills, and these are usually referred to the committee after second reading. The committee’s role is to examine the bills in detail to propose any amendments which, in the view of the committee, would improve the proposed legislation. To this end, the committee may wish to conduct hearings to get input from the public.

By a mechanism under the standing orders, the policy field committees may also initiate studies of their own choosing within certain parameters, either by agreement or on proposal by one of their members.

The committee is assisted by a core staff that you will encounter at every meeting. Included in this core is me—I’m the Clerk—responsible for the administrative needs of the committee. I’m here to provide primarily non-partisan procedural advice to the Chair and to all members of the committee. My office will notify you of any upcoming meetings or subcommittee meetings, and will forward any relevant materials to you whenever possible ahead of the meeting.

You will all have received a committee resource binder. These were mailed to you in July. The binder outlines the committee’s procedural and administrative practices, and contains some relevant background information on the committee.

My contact information is on the back page. I’m also happy to pass out my business cards. One small detail—and I can address this later—is that the email convention for assembly staff has changed. Whereas it was first name_last name@ontla.ola.org, it has been simplified to initial of first name, last name@ola.org. So I am sprzezdziecki@ola.org. I’ll provide that information to you later.

Again, if you have any questions about a document, about the committee—anything at all—don’t hesitate to contact me or my assistant, Trish Sarnicki. We both share a line, so when you call the number, you will likely get one of the two of us, and we’ll be happy to assist you.

The committee is staffed by a research officer, and Jerry will speak to his role; also by a Hansard reporter, seated at the table to my right, who is working to produce the verbatim record of the meetings; and also by personnel from the broadcast and recording service, seated at the console behind me. They are the ones who turn on your microphones.

In room 151, where simultaneous interpretation is available, the committee is also staffed by a Hansard interpreter. When the committee considers legislation clause by clause, legislative counsel is also present at the meeting, usually seated to my right, between the Hansard reporter and myself.

I will leave it at that, as a very general overview. I’ll pass it over to Jerry to say a few words about his role. Again, I’m happy to answer any questions at the end.

Mr. Jerry Richmond: Thank you, Sylwia, and congratulations, Chair. I’m very pleased to be here. I’m Jerry Richmond, from the legislative research service. I happen to be an urban planner by training.

This committee deals with a diverse range of subject

matters. What we normally do—if you were dealing with transportation or municipal, I would probably be the research officer, but we tend to substitute in other of our staffers, depending on the topic before you. In the audience we have one of my colleagues, Jim Elson, who is an engineer and a lawyer. So you may see some different faces up here.

The members who have been here at Queen’s Park before—Mr. Dickson, Mr. Colle, Mr. Crack—one of the major policy items Sylwia mentioned that this committee looked at in the previous Parliament was the Aggregate Resources Act. Aggregate deals with sand, gravel and stone. The committee held a major effort—public hearings, travel—and the committee was very, very proud to reach a consensus agreement on the report, with 38 recommendations. I had the privilege of working with the committee on that report.

Our role in research, the returning members would know. For the new members, in terms of our committee functions, we on occasion draft reports at the committee’s direction. When you’re looking at bills, we would normally prepare bill summaries and summaries of the testimony before the committee. We can also prepare research memos for the committee or for any of the individual members on topics from A to Z. Those of you who have availed yourselves of the research service would know that; those of you who may not have used our services, we’re here to serve and help you.

If I can answer any questions, as Sylwia said, I am willing to pass around my business card. We’re also affiliated with the legislative library, and that really is a valuable resource here at Queen’s Park.

I turn the floor back to the Chair.

The Chair (Mr. Grant Crack): Thank you. Are there any questions or comments for legislative research and/or the Clerk? If not, I would like to again thank you.

This is my second term of being Chair of general government, so I do have some experience. I will do my best to guide you and help to provide direction as we continue to move the legislative agenda forward for all Ontarians, right here in the general government committee.

I believe that will be the end of business for today. If I may have my gavel, Madam Clerk. This meeting is adjourned. Thank you very much.

The committee adjourned at 1417.


Monday 20 October 2014

Election of Chair G-1

Election of Vice-Chair G-1

Appointment of subcommittee G-1

Briefing G-1


Chair / Président

Mr. Grant Crack (Glengarry–Prescott–Russell L)

Vice-Chair / Vice-Président

Mr. Joe Dickson (Ajax–Pickering L)

Mr. Mike Colle (Eglinton–Lawrence L)

Mr. Grant Crack (Glengarry–Prescott–Russell L)

Mr. Joe Dickson (Ajax–Pickering L)

Mrs. Lisa Gretzky (Windsor West / Windsor-Ouest ND)

Ms. Ann Hoggarth (Barrie L)

Ms. Sophie Kiwala (Kingston and the Islands / Kingston et les Îles L)

Ms. Eleanor McMahon (Burlington L)

Ms. Lisa M. Thompson (Huron–Bruce PC)

Mr. Jeff Yurek (Elgin–Middlesex–London PC)

Substitutions / Membres remplaçants

Mrs. Laura Albanese (York South–Weston / York-Sud–Weston L)

Mr. Randy Pettapiece (Perth–Wellington PC)

Clerk / Greffière

Ms. Sylwia Przezdziecki

Staff / Personnel

Mr. Jerry Richmond, research officer,
Research Services