30e législature, 3e session

L047 - Fri 30 Apr 1976 / Ven 30 avr 1976

The House met at 10 a.m.


Mr. Speaker: Statements by the ministry.


Hon. Mr. Rhodes: I would like to inform the House of an agreement reached with Metro Toronto concerning rent-geared-to-income senior citizen units. The province has agreed to share in the 1976 operating losses on 6,488 rent-geared-to-income senior citizen housing units in that municipality. This will total some $2.2 million, representing 42.5 per cent of these losses.

We have agreed to do so in order to provide to Metro the same level of assistance for rent-geared-to-income senior citizen housing as is provided for similar housing in all other Ontario municipalities. I will be arranging to meet with Metro Chairman Paul Godfrey in the near future to discuss the development and management of assisted housing in Metro in the years ahead.


Hon. B. Stephenson: On April 27 the hon. member for Ottawa East (Mr. Roy) suggested that I had misled the House in replying to a question on April 22, concerning the Montfort Hospital in Ottawa. To support his claim, the hon. member read a letter from the Ministry of Health to Montfort Hospital advising that the hospital’s request for 30 new psychiatric beds had been approved and advising that capital and operating funds had been committed to this project.

The date of the letter referred to by the hon. member for Ottawa East was Oct. 25, 1974. I will refer briefly to later letters which were sent to all chairmen of hospital boards and all administrators of public hospitals.

On Dec. 17, 1974, to assist the ministry in preparing its three-year, multi-year plan, hospitals were asked to review their priorities for new programmes which were scheduled to commence in 1976-1977. They were also advised to submit the programmes with the highest priorities to their district health councils or to their co-ordinating committees. Hospitals were clearly warned that funds for new programmes would be very limited; that ail programmes recommended by councils would not be funded in 1976-1977 and some might be deferred to later years, depending upon the availability of funds.

Following that, on Dec. 20, 1974, the chairmen of all district health councils were requested to assess the projects submitted to them by hospitals in their area and to forward to the Ministry of Health a priority list on new programmes for the year 1976-1977.

On May 7, 1975, the Ottawa-Carleton Region District Health Council sent to the Ministry of Health a prioritized list of new programmes on the basis of information submitted by all of the local hospitals. The council’s list did not include a new programme for Montfort Hospital in 1976-1977.

On Dec. 1, 1975, with reference to 1976 operating budgets, the ministry advised hospitals that in view of current fiscal constraints, it would not be possible to implement new programmes in 1976.

On Jan. 28, 1976, a letter was sent from the ministry to all chairmen and administrators of hospitals, chairmen of co-ordinating committees, chairmen of district health councils, referring to the priority lists prepared in 1975 for the 1976-1977 programmes. The letter stated: “As you are very much aware, there has been a very dramatic restriction on the availability of dollars. As a consequence, we very reluctantly conclude that your proposal cannot be accepted at this time.” The letter went on to state that the ministry would be writing again to indicate the action which should be taken in regard to new programmes in future years.

I should mention, Mr. Speaker, that in October, 1974, in preparation for the introduction of the psychiatric unit at Montfort Hospital, certain renovations were begun and at the beginning of those renovations it was discovered that the hospital needed a new roof. The Ministry of Health has helped to fund that new roof at a cost of about $635,000, but the renovations for the psychiatric unit were not begun because of the other renovations which were required. In fact, this programme was not coming on stream until well after the subsequent letters were sent to the board.

It was certainly made clear to all hospitals, including the Montfort Hospital, that programmes requiring new operations money would require special ministry approval before coming on stream. Capital construction did proceed under ministry guidance but approval for new operating funds was not supplied by the ministry and they were informed that this would not be so.

In view of the severe financial restrictions placed upon the Ministry of Health after October, 1974, and the documented advice to the hospitals -- to all hospitals -- that fiscal constraints made it impossible to implement new programmes in 1976, we really truly cannot accept the statement that I misled the House in advising that Montfort Hospital acted unilaterally by opening beds in 1976 in its new psychiatric unit.

Mr. Lewis: These things don’t happen in a competent ministry.

Mr. S. Smith: What was the Minister of Health (Mr. F. S. Miller) going there to open? Nothing?


Hon. W. Newman: Mr. Speaker, as the latest round of discussions of the General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs is under way in Geneva, it is appropriate for me at this time to comment on the importance of Canadian tariff policies as they relate to Ontario’s agricultural industry.

Mr. Deans: Don’t know what you are saying.

Hon. W. Newman: So that my ministry will be better able to document conditions, I have established a trade and tariff committee parallel with the interministerial committee on GATT, which is operated by the Ministry of Industry and Tourism, to co-operate with the agriculture and food industry in researching and reviewing the ramifications of the effects of federal tariff policies. This committee has broad representation from the Ontario Food Council, the Farm Products Marketing Board, and the economies, livestock and extension branches of my ministry.

This committee was formed, therefore, to experience in assisting the various associations in the agriculture industry to prepare their briefs on tariffs for submission to the federal authorities. I am happy to say that the material was submitted to us by groups in nearly every section of the agriculture and food industry, separate from submissions received in the preparation of the Ministry of Industry and Tourism’s sector analysis on the food industry.

This committee was formed, therefore, to carry on this type of liaison and is now conducting a series of in-depth discussions with sectors of the industry. This committee will remain the focal point in my ministry for all trade and tariff information until the GATT negotiations are completed.

I have instructed my committee to complete their review with all of the major agriculture and food organizations so that I and the Minister of Industry and Tourism (Mr. Bennett) will be in a position to lead a delegation to Ottawa to meet with the Ministers of Agriculture, Industry, Trade and Commerce, and Finance. We know that major decisions on trade and tariffs are not made by the civil servants but by the cabinet itself. This is why I place such great emphasis on meeting with the senior cabinet ministers responsible for trade and tariffs.

The work of the committee to date confirms that Canadian tariff policies are creating enormous difficulties for producers and processors. To put it mildly, the present tariff system is hurting agriculture in this province. Tariffs on some imported agriculture commodities are based on a cents-per-pound calculation and the amounts are ridiculously low.

The area of fruits and vegetables is still operating on a system established in the 1930s. This system is placing our food industries under extreme pressures from imports, especially those from the United States where tariffs are calculated as a percentage of value. There is little a provincial government can do about tariffs other than make strong representation to the federal government, but we can certainly apply that particular pressure.

On March 31, I wrote Hon. Eugene Whelan, federal Minister of Agriculture. I would like to quote a few passages from that letter. I said, in part:

“I am becoming increasingly concerned about trade and tariff issues and how they affect our industry.

“The farmers, as well as the food processors, in my province are coming to me and complaining about the extreme difficulty that they find themselves in because they are shut out from export markets and in some oases forced to compete with low-priced imports.

“As far as Ontario is concerned, we see the following as key issues to be dealt with at the upcoming round of GATT negotiations.

“Equalization of Tariffs Between Canada and the USA: We can point out many examples of where US tariffs are higher than Canadian tariffs. We are not advocating free trade with the US; we are arguing for equalization of tariffs.

“Ontario’s Greater Emphasis on Value Added: It is not appropriate for Canada to continue to export basic agricultural commodities and import fully manufactured food products. We must provide a degree of protection to our local food processing industry. If parts of it disappear we will also lose significant portions of our agricultural production industry. Tariff or non-tariff measures which protect our basic agricultural production must also offer the same degree of protection to foods manufactured from these agricultural commodities.

“Revision of Seasonal Specific Tariffs on Fruits and Vegetables: The federal government ordered a complete review of the tariff structure for fresh and processed fruits and vegetables. It is simply inexcusable that the findings of this review have not been made known.”

I would point out that we have been waiting for the report of those findings since 1973. To continue:

“Seasonal specific tariffs were established in the 1930s so that the level of protection has been eroded by inflation over the years. It’s important that these tariffs be brought back to reasonable levels.

“Low-Priced Imports: Canada has anti-dumping legislation to deal with low-priced imports which may hurt a domestic industry. The problem is that nationally we seem to be very reluctant to take action, and when we do it is often too late to do the industry any good.”

Those are the highlights of my letter.

We in Ontario are not trying to build a wall around the province to keep out imports. All we want is a degree of equity and a fair basis on which to conduct competitive trade negotiations. I have written today to the federal Ministers of Industry, Trade and Commerce, Finance, and Agriculture to arrange a meeting to discuss trade and tariffs.

As soon as this can be arranged, the Minister of Trade and Tourism and I will lead a delegation of representatives from Ontario’s agriculture and food industry to Ottawa.

Mr. S. Smith: It’s about time. What were you doing the last 14 years?

Hon. Mr. Handleman: Where have you been? Last night we told the --

Hon. W. Newman: The leader of the Liberal Party is such an expert on agriculture. I would like to hear him sometime.

Mr. S. Smith: You will.

Mr. Gaunt: You will.

Hon. Mr. Davis: The Liberal critic is in the second row! Why would they do that to an agricultural expert like the member for Huron-Bruce?


Mr. S. Smith: Then how can the government insult its Solicitor General (Mr. MacBeth), Minister of Industry and Tourism (Mr. Bennett) and Minister of Revenue (Mr. Meen) like that?

Mr. Speaker: The hon. Minister of Agriculture and Food has the floor.



Hon. W. Newman: As the members are aware, the recently announced national dairy policy has created some hardships among Ontario dairy farmers. Members will recall that three years ago the federal government called for increased milk production to make Canada as near as possible self-sufficient. To assist Ontario dairy farmers in raising their output as requested by the federal government, the government of Ontario introduced an industrial milk production incentive programme.

We, as a government, are aware of our responsibility to ensure that all industrial milk producers are able to adjust to the implication of the recent cutbacks in milk quota by Ottawa. Accordingly, in addition to the commitment given during my previous IMPIP statement, this government will defer the requirement of paying either interest or principal on any IMPIP loan for a period of four months. We are presently discussing the details with the banks concerned.

In no way does this announcement preclude a farmer from making his IMPIP loan payments if he so desires, but it does give him the opportunity of reassessing his financial situation and gives him some temporary relief until something further can be worked out.

Mr. Speaker: Oral questions. The hon. Leader of the Opposition.


Mr. Lewis: Yes, a question of the Minister of Revenue, if I may: Why was it necessary for the complaints to come from the pensioners themselves, when their cheques were so significantly reduced because of whatever misadventure occurred in filling out forms in advance of the monthly pension cheques in April? Why was it necessary for the complaints to come from the pensioners, when his ministry must surely have noticed that it was sending out at least 5,000 fewer GAINS supplements than it had sent out in the previous month, and might surely have intervened to do something about it rather than having these people live in hardship for a month?

Hon. Mr. Meen: Mr. Speaker, I mentioned during the course of my supplementary estimates in March that it’s characteristic of this programme that the numbers of GAINS clientele will drop in April. It does that every year and the reason is that, of course, under OAS-GIS the recipients have to re-qualify, and it’s characteristic that some, in the course of a previous year, may have an adjustment in income or there may be other reasons why they may turn out to be disqualified under the GIS side of the OAS-GIS payment scheme.

We get our tapes from the Department of National Health and Welfare, and as these tapes come through, of course, we process them. We deliberately delayed the payments during this month of April by upwards of a week in order to endeavour to pick up as many as we could of those who might have been delayed in getting in their applications to the federal department. It was, therefore, and is, therefore, characteristic that there would be some drop.

We knew there would be some drop within our own area of GAINS payments, our clientele of some 6,200 of those in the five-year to 10-year -- less than 10 but over five -- residency qualification provisions. There was also an expectation of a drop there and we have processed those. All of ours are virtually current, and although we are down a few hundred from the 6,200 that prevailed in March, I had again indicated that we would expect a drop in that quarter. I don’t think there is anything of a significant nature that we would have detected at this early stage by way of a drop in the numbers coming through from the federal department.

In any event, as those are cleared by the federal government and we get the information through from them confirming the income levels that would then qualify the GAINS recipients for a make-up under our scheme, those cheques will go out; and of course they will relate back into the month of April if they did not qualify at this present time.

I don’t think that at this stage, where we are processing some 274,000 GAINS clientele, that one can be faulted for being curious as to whether there is or is not some problem with the federal administration of the OAS-GIS. I’m not privy to the information it gets from the clientele and in many cases those clientele who file their applications, I’m told, did not have full information.

Mr. Lewis: What do you mean clientele?

Mr. Speaker: Order, please. The hon. minister.

Hon. Mr. Meen: They are entitled when they have qualified, Mr. Speaker, and it is up to the federal government to determine whether they are qualified under OAS and GIS.

Mr. Lewis: By way of supplementary; doesn’t the minister realize that the 5,000 to 7,500 eligible GAINS recipients who did not re-apply according to the federal requirement are precisely the group of people most vulnerable, because their inability to re-apply speaks to their difficulty of age? Isn’t it possible for the minister and his ministry, in advance of March 31, let us say in December, to make a serious effort by mail or by phone to reach this group of GAINS recipients to warn them of what is in the offing and to maintain them on the rolls?

Hon. Mr. Meen: Mr. Speaker, they are advised that they must re-qualify. They are advised of this; they are given assistance through various agencies, private and otherwise; and I suggest that this matter, which comes up every year, will be resolved. I trust that the federal Department of National Health and Welfare will sort out its side of it, and when its tapes come through to us we’ll be able to process them from there on. In every case in which we have been dealing with the clientele direct we are virtually in a current position.

Mr. B. Newman: A supplementary: Does the minister include in the December, January, February and March GAINS cheques reminders to the recipients that they must qualify according to the federal standards before they would be eligible for the GAINS, and that if they don’t file the application their GAINS cheques would terminate in April -- or in March rather?

Hon. Mr. Meen: Mr. Speaker, there is something which goes out to them but I must confess that I do not know whether it’s included as a stuffer in the cheque or just what is done. I will endeavour to find out.

Mr. Bain: I would like to ask the minister if he will attempt to get the federal department to embark upon a programme which will reflect the same zeal that the minister shared with us, and which his department feels when it collects revenue from people, when it collects taxes? Is the minister aware that many of these people filled out all the forms appropriately, they went in but the federal ministry just can’t process them in time and, therefore, the people are cut off? Doesn’t the minister think he could assist them by coming up with a better method whereby people don’t have their income reduced from $200 to, say, $135 in one fell swoop? There must be something the minister can do. He couldn’t afford to have his income cut by that much and still make his payments.

Mr. Speaker: Order, please.

Hon. Mr. Meen: Mr. Speaker, the federal ministry is the master of its own household and I would say it knows how it should be processing the forms at its end of things.


Mr. Lewis: A question of the acting Minister of Health: Since the minister is engaged in a daily defence and recapitulation of how her ministry is not in error, perhaps she could explain to us what occurred between the directive at the end of February to the Peterborough Civic Hospital to cut $550,000 from its budget, and the redirective in mid-April -- indeed just last week -- that the cut would be reduced to $100,000 because somewhere an error in regression analysis occurred?

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, I do not have the details of that specific discussion at the moment but I shall attempt to acquire them and present them to the hon. member.

Mr. Lewis: Thank you very much.


Mr. Lewis: May I ask a question of the Minister of Government Services?


Mr. Lewis: Yes, it gives one pause. May I ask the minister, does she applaud or approve or encourage people, leading director, of branches within her ministry, to be frugal enough to spend even under the budget restrictions laid down within the restraint programme when they can? Is she pretty tough on restraint in her ministry?

Hon. Mrs. Scrivener: Restraints in my ministry have been well maintained, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Lewis: Maybe the minister could explain to me a memo from Mr. Arkadie, the assistant director for the province of the property management branch, to all regional managers on March 26, which begins as follows:

“Re: Underspending -- Fiscal Year 1975-1976.

“The property management branch has been recently questioned in the matter of its underspending during the current fiscal year. There are, of course, a number of contributory factors which have caused this particular situation. It is our aim to avoid a similar occurrence in the forthcoming fiscal year.”

Might the minister explain the style and manner of her ministry which penalizes people for restraint?

Hon. Mrs. Scrivener: There is no penalty for such restraint, Mr. Speaker. I haven’t seen that memo, of course, but the way I would interpret it is that Mr. Arkadie is probably asking for a more direct estimate of expenses in the coming year.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Exactly; it is quite customary.

Mr. Lewis: To be fair, it goes on to say that “every attempt must be made to fully complete this branch’s programme to the extent of budgetary allocations.” God forbid that the ministry should underspend its budget, even if that’s desirable.

Hon. Mrs. Scrivener: Mr. Speaker, I think the Leader of the Opposition is putting an incorrect imputation towards Mr. Arkadie. I believe that in some cases in our ministry, when we cannot complete certain projects on time, then obviously there will be underspending; but this is not something over which we necessarily have got control. Meantime, I think Mr. Arkadie is really asking for closer estimates.


Mr. Lewis: A question of the Minister of Industry and Tourism: What exactly does the ministry intend to do with the sizeable amount of money left in the estimates this year for Minaki Lodge?

Hon. Mr. Bennett: Mr. Speaker, the moneys that have been allocated for Minaki Lodge in the current estimates are for the completion of the first phase of the redevelopment of Minaki Lodge.

Mr. Lewis: Just a second. Does the minister mean the $1.5 million, plus the $400,000 for operating costs, which are in the current estimates, must also go down the drain for this white elephant? Does this mean we can’t stop the tide now?

The minister has often struck me as Canute, standing before the waves, lapping in reality in front of him. Can’t he possibly use the absurdity vested in him and stop what is happening to Minaki?

Hon. Mr. Bennett: Mr. Speaker, a great deal of the work is under contract already and equipment is on site. We estimate the contract will be completed by the end of June or early July.

Mr. S. Smith: It’s a fishing lodge with poisoned fish.

Hon. Mr. Bennett: The $400,000 for operating costs will be for the maintenance and upkeep of the facilities, for security of the lodge, for the operation of the golf course and ski hill, and for Hoist Point, which will continue to operate for some period of time.

Mr. Lewis: Which no one will ever use.

Hon. Mr. Bennett: Mr. Speaker, the Leader of the Opposition might say no one will use it. But let me assure him that Hoist Point has been booked to its capacity, which is available for 60 tenants.

Mr. Angus: A supplementary: Is it not true that some of the materials that were ordered for Minaki Lodge, such as the catering equipment for the main kitchen, as reported by the Toronto Star, have been returned to the supplier? And could not similar situations occur with those contracts which the minister says must be completed?

Hon. Mr. Bennett: Mr. Speaker, fortunately we were able to cancel some of the equipment that would be used for kitchen facilities. The balance of the work must be completed to make sine that the operation is secure and that the building is completely enclosed so that it will not be destroyed by weather conditions if it is left open to the weather.

Mr. Foulds: A supplementary: Does the minister agree with his colleague, the Minister of Natural Resources (Mr. Bernier), who said on an open-line radio show in Kenora last Saturday that this was a resort designed for the elite? And does the minister think this is the kind of resort that we should be spending money on in this province when the minister goes about the province talking about restraint?

Hon. Mr. Bennett: First of all, Mr. Speaker, I am not aware of the comments made by the Minister of Natural Resources. Secondly, may I say to this House, as I’ve said before, this facility was never developed or designed for the elite; it was designed and developed for the tourist industry in the Province of Ontario. I think we recognize the constraint programme by deferring the second phase of the development of Minaki Lodge. That is why we are ceasing to operate at this particular point.


Mr. Speaker: Has the Leader of the Opposition any further questions? This will be a final supplementary, the member for Hamilton West.

Mr. S. Smith: In view of the fact that this is not going forward, is the ministry continuing to push forward with the ski hill that’s being developed nearby? Is that also being curtailed in this atmosphere of restraint?

Hon. Mr. Bennett: Mr. Speaker, the ski hill has been in operation for some four or five years. It was brought into being through the ARDA programme of the federal government. The 5k hill will go into operation again in the 1976-1977 season and will be under the management and guidance of the community association, with the financing being done by the Minaki organization.


Mr. S. Smith: A question of the acting Minister of Health: Can the minister confirm that only between 60 and 70 per cent of children are actually being immunized against poliomyelitis today in the Province of Ontario? Is she not concerned about that, if that is true, in view of the possible accumulation of polio and other viruses in the sewage of this province as confirmed by Dr. Sattar, of the University of Ottawa?

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, several of the very reliable medical officers of health of the Province of Ontario have made statements that in their areas 25 to 30 per cent of the children are not immunized. I find this a terrifying prospect in view of the fact that Ontario has had the best children’s immunization programme in the world until this time.

Unfortunately, I believe that perhaps both parents and physicians are being somewhat complacent because of the lack of epidemics -- dramatic epidemics -- of childhood diseases. I think we must develop at this time a very active programme promoting the value of child immunization to parents -- mind you, it is done through school systems every year with some regularity but apparently many parents do not take advantage of it -- through the medical profession, through the well-baby clinics, though the medical officers of health and the health units throughout the province. We cannot afford to allow any degree of lack of immunization to prevail in the Province of Ontario. That’s our only protection against future epidemics of childhood diseases which can prove as disastrous as those which occurred in the 19th century, of which you see records in every small graveyard in Ontario.

Mr. S. Smith: A supplementary: I know the minister feels this way and I appreciate that, but perhaps she could explain to the House why it is that her ministry has done absolutely nothing about this when the information that the rate of immunization was going down has been available and when the ministry knows, now, that viruses are accumulating in the sewage of this province in a very dangerous way?

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, the hon. leader of the third party will recognize that --

Mr. S. Smith: Don’t play that game, too.

Hon. B. Stephenson: -- viruses are accumulating in every sewage disposal plant in the world at the moment. However, there has been an active programme within the Ministry of Health. We have been concerned) about this.

We have had communications with the professional associations, with the health units, with medical officers of health. Booklets have been published, which are available to all sorts of people through doctors’ offices and through municipal offices, regarding the value of immunization. It is obvious that we do have to become much more vigilant about this because we are suffering, as are all other developed nations at the moment, from complacency because of the lack of any epidemics.

Unfortunately, as long as parents are not particularly concerned about the possibility of child deaths through these kinds of diseases, they do not make the effort to avail themselves of the opportunities. The opportunities are there. They are right across the province and they have not ceased to be there at any time.

It is important, however, that one remembers that immunization is not mandatory. It is a decision of the parents of the child and we will do all we can to persuade parents that they must fulfil this responsibility.

Ms. Gigantes: Do I understand the minister to suggest that parents are being lax because every school in Ontario has a programme of immunization? I know my child’s school doesn’t.

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, if I said every school does I have misled the House. This is the prerogative of the local school board and in most school board areas, the school immunization programme does prevail. Unfortunately, there are a number of parents who are lax about this.

Ms. Gigantes: So is the ministry.

Mr. Breithaupt: Mr. Speaker, could the minister advise us whether she is dealing with the Minister of Education (Mr. Wells) to ensure that information is being obtained by the school boards and encouragement is being given to ensure that if funds are necessary they will be provided, to have a much more active advertising of the requirements for immunization in the school system?

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, yes, we are.

Mr. Speaker: Further questions?

A final supplementary; the member for Brantford.

Mr. Makarchuk: In view of the fact that most of these programmes in the schools are initiated by school nurses, and because of the minister’s constraint and restraint programme some school boards are dismissing their school nurses, would she not consider that as being detrimental to the effectiveness of the programme?

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, the hon. member for Brantford is not entirely correct in that most of these programmes are not initiated by school nurses at all. They are in fact initiated on the conjoint action of local health units with the school boards, that is the initiating force. There should be no reason at all why the programme of immunization should be affected in any way by the constraint programme in any health unit or in any school board area.


Mr. S. Smith: A question of the Premier, in the absence of the Treasurer (Mr. McKeough): Does the Premier share the concern expressed by the chairman of Metropolitan Toronto, Mr. Godfrey, about what he terms the inevitable decline and fall of municipal government in Canada, given the difficulties facing municipalities? And can he confirm whether or not Mr. Peckford, Newfoundland’s Municipal Affairs Minister, was in fact speaking for the provinces when he said the provinces are not interested in talking about redistribution of tax money, even though the federal minister claims that he himself would be interested?

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, I’ll try to answer for the Treasurer. I certainly can’t answer for the statements made by another minister from another province. I think that --

Mr. S. Smith: Kissing cousins from Newfoundland.

Mr. Cassidy: There’s more of a relationship there than between you guys and Ottawa.

Hon. Mr. Davis: -- if the hon. member would read some of the discussions here in the House and some of the documentation that has been tabled over the past four or five years it will demonstrate very conclusively that this government has always been on record as recognizing the need of the municipalities for some redistribution of tax power and some solution to the problem that we all know exists. In fact, Mr. Speaker --

Mr. Deans: Why are you transferring responsibility?

Hon. Mr. Davis: Listen, if the member for Wentworth wants to ask a supplementary question he may do so. I’m trying now to answer the leader of the Liberal Party in the Province of Ontario --

Mr. Deans: It is also very disturbing.


Mr. Speaker: Order, please.

Hon. Mr. Davis: -- and for the Province of Ontario. Have I got it all correct?

Mr. S. Smith: You are learning, you almost had it. Usually referred to as the exalted leader.

Hon. Mr. Davis: I don’t often disagree with the chairman of Metropolitan Toronto, who by and large shows very excellent judgement.

Mr. Cassidy: We’re not very sure about that.

Hon. Mr. Davis: However, I think perhaps in his capacity as president of the national association he is perhaps expressing a degree of alarm that need not exist.

Mr. MacDonald: They’re just going bankrupt picking up the responsibilities you have shelved.

Hon. Mr. Davis: I cannot see the municipalities, certainly in this province -- and I will not presume to speak for municipalities in the other provinces of Canada -- I cannot see them disappearing or suffering any undue difficulties more so than would be experienced by any other level of government. I think we will see the municipalities functioning extremely well, Mr. Speaker, for many years yet to come.

As I say I don’t often disagree with the views of the chairman of Metro but I really think he is perhaps unnecessarily alarmed at this moment.

Mr. Speaker: The member for Hamilton West with a supplementary for the Premier.

Mr. S. Smith: Mr. Speaker, we were joking about the kissing cousins in Newfoundland and all that, but I do have a concern. I hope the Premier will explain. Is it true that even though the federal government allegedly is willing the provinces are not willing to meet to discuss redistribution of tax income so as to rescue the municipalities in this whole country -- and, of course, in Ontario?

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, I’m going strictly by memory now, but my recollection is that Ontario either initiated or was substantially responsible for some of the tri-level discussions that have taken place.

There has been some discussion here about the “Edmonton commitment,” where this province made it very clear that whatever percentage increase in revenues we received would be shared on that basis with the municipalities. There was a commitment, I think, or some understanding by the member’s cousins in Ottawa that the federal government recognized the plight of the municipalities and they too were prepared to participate. In fact, in one of the major areas of expenditure by the municipalities of this province, the larger urban municipalities, particularly Metropolitan Toronto I can recall vividly, it was about two years ago this coming June, when the gentleman -- who from the Grower, or one of the farm and country magazines, I notice the leader of the Liberal Party of Ontario still very enthusiastically supports, according to his own quotation -- that gentleman was making a speech here in Metropolitan Toronto. I can recall it very well, because I was in a room at the Royal York Hotel and somebody said: “Davis, you’re on television again talking about urban transit.” I rushed in and found it was the Prime Minister of Canada. In fact, the language sounded very much like the language on the Spadina expressway, where he was promising to the urban centres massive funding for urban transportation, both in terms of capital and operational support.

Mr. Lewis: Do you always rush in to hear yourself?

Mr. Wildman: Fools rush in.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, if memory serves me correctly, we have not seen a penny; at least the municipalities have not seen any of this federal largesse in terms of a very pressing urban need in the field of transportation, although this government is still continuing to fund them in this area at a very high level because we recognize this is a very important priority. I hope that helps the member for Hamilton West in his assessment of this very basic issue.

Mr. Speaker: A supplementary?

Mr. Swart: In view of that rather rambling and political reply, could I ask the Premier specifically if his government is prepared to notify the Hon. Barney Danson that it is now prepared to negotiate a redistribution of the tax base, based on the task force report?

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, I’m not sure we’re prepared to notify the Hon. Mr. Danson in this vein at this precise moment at all. I think that in terms of the federal government’s interest in the municipalities, it would certainly help the climate and certainly the economics of the municipalities if the federal government were to live up to some of their promises of two years ago of assistance to the municipalities.

Mr. Speaker: Are there any further questions? A supplementary from the member for London Centre.

Hon. Mr. Davis: You’re not coming to their defence too?

Mr. Peterson: They’re doing all right on their own, don’t worry about them. I would like to ask the Premier: Is he prepared to call a conference with the municipalities to discuss this very serious problem?

Hon. Mr. Davis: I have been at a number of meetings with heads of municipalities. I can’t recall too many where we have not, in fact, discussed the whole question of municipal financial support, and we’re ready to discuss it with them at any time. If the member for London Centre is asking should we have a full-fledged conference; I think it’s quite obvious that with the discussions that are being initiated by the first minister of this country on matters like the constitution, hopefully some question will arise at some point in time on the distribution of power, or hopefully some recognition of the position of this province with respect to the question of the tax base, redistribution of taxes, and that would be an appropriate time then to have some conversations with the municipalities. But until the federal government of Canada is prepared to recognize the great difficulty of the provinces on the question of shared-cost programmes, the way they opt in, opt out and leave us with no degree of security or permanency -- and I can give you several examples if you would like -- until then, I think Mr. Speaker, until some of those issues are settled --

Mrs. Campbell: You just pass it on to the municipalities.

Hon. Mr. Davis: -- by your cousins in Ottawa, then other discussions or conferences would be relatively academic.

Mr. Peterson: This province would be better off with a Liberal government.

Mr. Speaker: A further question from the member for Hamilton West.


Mr. S. Smith: The next question I have, Mr. Speaker, is for the Minister of Correctional Services. I wonder if he could explain to this House, and assure this House, that during the visit he has arranged for the press to go to Bowmanville, it will not just be a tour of physical facilities that people will go traipsing in and out to look at? Can he assure us that the reporters there will be given a chance to speak with some of the children who have been kept in solitary confinement; to find out what the children feel about this; how they perceive it; what the reasons are that they perceive were advanced for them to do that? And without identifying the children, without in any way infringing on their confidentiality, will the reporters be given some real chance to talk to those children; or is this just going to be a Cook’s tour and a whitewash?

Hon. J. R. Smith: Mr. Speaker, it is an open visit. I hope that the members of the press will avail themselves of that opportunity. They will have every opportunity to speak to the superintendent and all members of the staff, if they wish; and to any of the boys. But on the understanding that it’s not just going to be the nine or so youngsters who were involved in segregation, say last month, summoned as a group or individually to be interrogated and questioned by the press. I’d rather it be a casual visit. As they go through the institution, I want them to meet all the students and speak with them in that manner.

Ms. Sandeman: Supplementary: While the press are having the tour the minister is describing, I hope they will be given the chance to assess ministry spending priorities by comparing the detention cells, which the grand jury described as deplorable, with --

Mr. Speaker: Order, please. Does the hon. member have a question to ask rather than a statement to make?

Ms. Sandeman: I am asking it.


Mr. Speaker: Order, please. It is not a debate.

Mr. Lewis: Do you recall what you allowed yesterday?

Mr. Speaker: I recall very well what the members did yesterday, yes.

Ms. Sandeman: My question is will the reporters be given the chance to compare the minister’s spending priorities by comparing the detention cells, which the grand jury described as deplorable, with the renovations to the superintendent’s office which include a new fish pool, fountain, padded doors, etc. and so on?

Hon. Mr. Davis: What are the et cetera and so on?

Hon. J. R. Smith: I think those questions would be better answered during my estimates, which are presently before the House.


Hon. J. R. Smith: I happened to notice the fish pond in question on my visit to the school several months ago. It apparently was made by a student in one of the shops at very little cost. Most of the other work that was done is very modest actually.

Mr. Cassidy: Why isn’t there any in the detention cells?

Ms. Sandeman: Supplementary: If renovations can be done by students at very little cost, perhaps the minister could direct the attention of those students in the shop classes to include the conditions for the students themselves as well as for the administration?

Mr. Makarchuk: They always come off second best.

Mr. Speaker: A final supplementary, the member for Durham East.

Mr. Moffatt: I would like to ask the minister if he would make a report to this House of any of the actions which have been taken as a result of previous grand jury reports of the Bowmanville facility, which have always found the conditions to be deplorable.

Hon. J. R. Smith: I would be pleased to.


Mr. S. Smith: My last question is to the Minister of Agriculture and Food, hoping to tap his expertise in this particular field. In view of the fact that the federal Agriculture Minister refuses to accept the CEMA agreement, including a five per cent production sleeve, what is this minister doing to ensure that Ontario producers get their fair share of national egg production?

Hon. W. Newman: I am certainly pleased the expert has asked that question, because I would be pleased to answer it.

Mrs. Campbell: Good.

Mr. S. Smith: At least we are pleasing each other today.

Hon. W. Newman: CEMA has had some growing pains.

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: So has the Liberal leader.

Hon. W. Newman: The national programme of egg marketing in this province has had a few growing pains, but it is beginning to work. I said when I first came into the ministry, and I say it again now, that all we were asking for in the Province of Ontario was equity. We were asking to have the same treatment as other provinces had. After a great deal of federal-provincial negotiation in Ottawa, and then negotiating with the national council, our council and the marketing board, nine of the 10 provinces agreed on a level of production across Canada; the tenth province reserved judgement. After they all agreed, Mr. Whelan came down and said, “I veto it.” Now we went down and we all negotiated in good faith.

Mr. Lewis: He is a Liberal, for heaven’s sake.

Hon. W. Newman: I am somewhat concerned about this. Maybe the member, with his great relationship with the Prime Minister of this country, would do something about it, because I still don’t know why I got that wire. I am concerned and our negotiators have been in Ottawa this week working on the matter. I am now waiting for word from our own Egg Marketing Board about what they would like to do, and I probably will be able to support them.

Mr. S. Smith: Supplementary: I think that wire was disgraceful. I want to know whether the minister is prepared actually to fight for Ontario’s rights in this regard, whether there is any --


Mr. S. Smith: -- bargaining power that he feels he has. Does the minister feel he has any bargaining power with which to get the real rights of Ontario and not just to kowtow to Mr. Whelan in this disgraceful attitude that he has taken?

Mr. Yakabuski: Where does Whelan come from -- Manitoba?

Mr. Lewis: Here now, don’t do that to the Liberals.


Hon. W. Newman: Mr. Speaker, let’s deal government-to-government and let’s find out what this --


Mr. S. Smith: Deal government-to-government here, not party-to-party. Let’s forget this party nonsense and deal with Ontario.

Mr. Speaker: Order, please; we’re wasting time.

Hon. W. Newman: Maybe you should do a little self-examination.

Mr. S. Smith: If you come for a battle of wits, come armed.

Hon. W. Newman: I’ll tell the member this, we have negotiated an equitable deal for the Province of Ontario. We have an Egg Marketing Board in the Province of Ontario which is a producer board and we’ve had meetings with them and with our Farm Products Marketing Board and we have worked out the agreement. If the member feels so strongly about it, I would appreciate his support, too.

Mr. S. Smith: You have it.

Hon. W. Newman: He should help his friends in Ottawa, and I’m not trying to pass the buck. We’re negotiating --


Mr. Speaker: Order, please.

Hon. W. Newman: We are negotiating right now to try to work this matter out. The egg producers of this province know what I’ve done and will continue to do to try to protect their interests to make sure they get a fair deal.

Mr. S. Smith: You are the one who talks to them, government-to-government.

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: They used to be your friends, too.

Mr. Reid: They used to be your friends

Mr. Speaker: The hon. member for Oriole.

Mr. Moffatt: Ugh.

Mr. Speaker: Order, please.

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: It’s the same way we feel when you get up, Moffatt -- “Ugh.”


Mr. Williams: Mr. Speaker, a question of the acting Minister of Health.


Mr. Speaker: Order, please, the time is nearly up for question period. I suggest we get on with the business of the House.

Mr. Williams: The other day, Ald. Betty Sutherland, a member of the local council of the borough of North York, disclosed that schoolchildren had found unopened vials of serum and unused hypodermic needles behind a medical centre in the borough of North York. This gives me cause to ask the acting minister what preventive measures exist under the Public Health Act or its regulations to ensure against this type of occurrence normally taking place? If there are not adequate preventive measures, what remedial measures would she suggest be taken at this time?

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, hospitals and other institutions at which pathological specimens are removed and gathered are under a specific regulation regarding disposal of those substances. They in turn also dispose of various drugs and vials of materials in a similar way. Most of this is incinerated. However, physicians’ offices are not so regulated.

The action of the Ministry of Health and the medical profession in the Province of Ontario has been an educational programme, particularly in view of the vast increase in the usage of disposable syringes and disposable needles, to make physicians and their staffs aware of the necessity of breaking those syringes and needles, and opening and draining vials of materials before they are put out for ordinary garbage collection. This is a very real health hazard and it is recognized as such.


Mr. Samis: A question to the Minister of Consumer and Commercial Relations. What’s happening over there?

An hon. member: That’s a good question.

Mr. Samis: It is Friday.

Mr. Breithaupt: Do you want a general answer or some specifics?

Mr. Samis: How can he explain the fact that 23 lottery agents were able to sell tickets in this province without receiving police clearance or government identity cards?

Mr. Drea: Olympic Lottery? You know the answer to that.

Mr. Breithaupt: Now they want identity cards.

Hon. Mr. Handleman: Mr. Speaker, all we do is approve clearance for those Olympic lottery distributors whose names are given to us by the regional director -- who is no longer the regional director -- and presumably the regional director who is no longer the regional director failed to give us those names to clear.

Mr. Breithaupt: Appoint a new director.

Mr. Samis: A supplementary: Could I ask what steps the minister is taking, beyond replacing the director, to make sure this doesn’t happen again?

Hon. Mr. Handleman: Mr. Speaker, I don’t think we have any force whereby we can order the Olympic Lottery Corp. to send names to us. These people who have been appointed without our clearance under the terms of the agreement are not officially Olympic Lottery distributors.

Mr. Peterson: A supplementary: Is the minister prepared to make recommendations to the corporations under the jurisdiction of his ministry to clean up that whole terrible mess of the lottery corporation and the distribution system? What is he prepared to do to protect the people of this province? Is he prepared to make recommendations?

Mr. Yakabuski: The headquarters is in Quebec.

Hon. Mr. Handleman: Mr. Speaker, there is a very iron-clad agreement between the Province of Ontario and the Olympic Lottery Corp. as to the procedures it is to follow in selling Olympic tickets in this province. It has not followed them.

Mr. Peterson: Wintario?

Hon. Mr. Handleman: I have nothing to do with Wintario.

Mr. Deans: How can it be an iron-clad agreement?


Mr. Stong: Mr. Speaker, I have a question for the acting Minister of Health. Is the minister aware that the board of directors of the Scarborough Centenary Hospital held their annual meeting last evening and denied 2,100 members of the public from active participation, even though they had signed up for the association by invitation? Given that fact, what is the ministry going to do to prevent public hospital boards from hereafter having the right to deny public membership in the hospitals, especially where they are provided for by hospital association bylaws?

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, I am aware of the circumstances of last night. I am also aware of the circumstances which led up to the situation which occurred last night, and the peculiarities of the application forms which were submitted by 2,100 people. The Ministry of Health is most certainly concerned that boards of hospitals be representative of communities, and there are model bylaws laid down by the Ministry of Health which undoubtedly will be reviewed, as I know the Scarborough Centenary Hospital is going to review its bylaws in view of this situation, which is quite unusual in the province.

Mr. Stong: Supplementary: Is the ministry taking an active part in reviewing those bylaws with that board?

Hon. B. Stephenson: Mr. Speaker, the Ministry of Health took an active part in drafting the bylaws in the first place and it most certainly takes an active part in any review of them.

Mr. Germa: Supplementary: How can boards of directors of hospitals ever be representative of communities until such time as they are elected to their position of authority?

Hon. B. Stephenson: There are presently some in the Province of Ontario which are elected.

Mr. Laughren: Not in Sudbury, I’ll tell you.

Hon. B. Stephenson: It’s not necessarily widespread at the moment, but this is certainly one of the aspects of representative hospital government which we are looking at.

Mr. Laughren: Sudbury is not one of them.

Hon. B. Stephenson: With the input of district health councils, this situation will probably be modified.


Hon. Mr. Meen: Mr. Speaker, the member for Windsor-Walkerville (Mr. B. Newman) asked me earlier what information was communicated to our GAINS clientele as to the requirements for renewal. I’ve ascertained that, beginning in December and flowing through January, and I understand completing in February, the federal Department of National Health and Welfare provided to all their OAS-GIS recipients application forms for renewal of their qualifications for purposes of requalification in this month of April. They do this each year.

So in February, with our cheques, we included a stuffer that refers to the federal application form and says, “If you have not completed this form, please do it now,” and it then goes on to provide the phone numbers for the toll-free line of Zenith 8-2000 into our information office if there are any questions. A similar form was included in the March remittals also to our GAINS recipients. I might just add, in conclusion, that they are bilingual.

Mr. Bain: Even when people fill out all these forms in plenty of time, they still have their supplement and their GAINS cut off. What steps will the minister take to ensure that the file can be reviewed, etc., so that this won’t happen?

Hon. Mr. Meen: Mr. Speaker, I think I’ve already answered the question with respect to the tapes that come through from the OAS-GIS qualification under the National Health and Welfare scheme. And, of course, I’ve already answered that in our own case our analysis of the application forms is current.

Mr. S. Smith: Supplementary.

Mr. Speaker: No, I think there are too many supplementaries. There are two minutes left in the question period, and 35 minutes were taken with the two leaders’ original questions and their supplementaries. You can’t have it every way. The hon. member for Carleton East.


Ms. Gigantes: Mr. Speaker, a question to the Minister of Housing: Is the minister aware of the letter written by the manager of the municipal and private abatement section of the Ministry of the Environment, Mr. Larry Stout, to members of the South Urban Community Committee, suggesting that the ministry and all the people involved in the planning of that community had better take another look at the cost involved in environmental control and the priorities under the Ottawa-Carleton regional plan?


Hon. Mr. Rhodes: No, Mr. Speaker, I am not aware of that letter.

Mr. Lewis: That’s quite a letter!

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: I am aware of that.

Mr. Speaker: A supplementary.

Ms. Gigantes: Will the minister make himself aware of the contents of that letter and take into consideration the new evaluations and studies which the Environment Ministry has done? The suggestion in the letter is that there has been an indication of inadequate weighting of these very important studies for potential destruction of the Rideau River -- the prohibitive costs that may be involved in developing an environmentally clean development in that area.

Mr. Speaker: Order, please. This is not a debate on the subject.

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: Mr. Speaker, I will certainly make myself aware of the letter, as the hon. member would like.


Mr. Givens: I would just like to ask a question of the Minister of Housing. In view of the diminution in the tempo of construction of rental residential housing, what initiative is he taking in conjunction with tri-level governmental action in moving the railway corridor at the Union Station southward in order to free up enough land to enable the construction of about 10,000 units of rental residential accommodation there, which could be done on very short order?

Hon. Mr. Rhodes: Mr. Speaker, as far as the tri-level action goes, I have done nothing at this stage. I have had discussions with the federal minister, Mr. Danson, trying to determine in what direction they intend to go or would like to go in that area as it relates to their whole Harbourfront project. We have had some discussions and there will be more, but I have not entered into discussions involving the federal government and the municipality at this stage.

Mr. Speaker: The oral question period has expired.


Presenting reports.

Hon. Mr. Welch: May I table copies of Ontario’s proposal for an alternative method of pricing domestic crude oil which, it is my understanding, will go on the order paper and be taken into consideration in the House on Monday afternoon.

Mr. McKessock from the standing miscellaneous estimates committee reported the following resolution, which was read as follows and adopted:

Resolved: That supply in the following amount and to defray the expenses of the Office of the Assembly be granted to Her Majesty for the fiscal year ending March 31, 1977:

Office of the Assembly

Office of the Assembly programme $12,372,500.

Mr. Speaker: Order, please. There is a great deal of noise in the chamber.


Hon. Mr. Welch moved that the private members’ hour for Monday, May 3 be held at 5 p.m. on Thursday, May 6.

Motion agreed to.

Mr. Speaker: Introduction of bills.


Mr. Evans moved first reading of bill intituled, An Act to amend the Highway Traffic Act.

Motion agreed to; first reading of the bill.

Mr. Evans: Mr. Speaker, a brief explanation. If this bill is passed it would make it mandatory for all car manufacturers to install air bags in all automobiles as standard equipment. It has already been proved without a doubt that air bags save lives and that they inflict no inconvenience on the passengers of the automobile. I have also been informed that the cost of installation on a production basis could be lower than $65 per car.


Mr. Lewis moved first reading of bill intituled, An Act to amend the Employment Standards Act, 1974.

Motion agreed to; first reading of the bill.

Mr. Lewis: Mr. Speaker, the purpose of the bill is to require employers to pay employees their regular wages where the employees’ contract of employment is or has become impossible of performance or frustrated by an order, direction or notice made, given or issued under any Act for health or safety reasons. The employer would be required to pay the employee for a period of up to 60 days while the cleanup or repairs are taking place.


Mr. Williams moved first reading of bill intituled, An Act to amend the Legislative Assembly Act.

Motion agreed to; first reading of the bill.

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


Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, before the orders of the day, I wish to table the answers to questions 2, 16 and 22 on the notice paper.

Mr. Speaker: Orders of the day.

Clerk of the House: The first order, resuming the adjourned debate on the amendment to the motion that this House approves in general the budgetary policy of the government.


Mr. Williams: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the recognition from the opposite side of the House.

Mr. Lewis: There was once a member of this House who spoke for several months --

Mr. Breithaupt: And nobody noticed.

Mr. Lewis: -- on the budget and then he expired.

Mr. Williams: Patience, patience. Mr. Speaker, last time, I was discussing the budget on the basis of the fact that I felt the papers introduced by the Treasurer (Mr. McKeough) on budget evening, April 6, had merely highlighted the real substance and pith of the state of the union, so to speak, as reflected more in depth in the budgetary position papers following the introductory remarks that were made by the Treasurer that evening. As such, I thought it was necessary and incumbent that the real pith and substance of the budget be introduced into the record in the light of a certain amount of hyperbole, containing mistruths or misinformed statements as to what, in fact, the budget was all about.

Accordingly, I had spent the evening dealing with the first five position papers and was about to comment on the sixth paper, which unfortunately among all of them was the only one that contained a note of pessimism. One may question why the Treasurer had seen need even to present a paper on this matter, which is primarily a federal consideration in that it has international implications.

As pointed out in the position paper dealing with the performance under the auto pact, the Treasurer was quick to point out that, in fact, as the auto industry goes, so goes the wellbeing of this province. It was clearly stated that 90 per cent of the Canadian automotive industry is located in Ontario and it accounts directly for over 12 per cent of the wages paid in this province. Further, it reflects one out of every six job opportunities existing in this province. It is for this reason, and so it should have been, that the Treasurer pointed out the fact that there appeared to be a serious situation developing in this very basic industry of the province, and as such introduced the position paper. I think it’s unfortunate that, to date, due attention hasn’t been given to this document. I’m sure there’ll be much more discussion on it in the weeks to come, of necessity and out of great concern, by all members of this House.

I would point out, as the position paper does, with regard to the short-term recovery in the industry that there’s no doubt of that now that we’re moving out of our recessional period. The Treasurer feels and I think this House should now address itself collectively to the serious longer-term problems in the Canadian industry which this paper identifies and suggests ways and means of perhaps dealing with. In this regard the paper identifies three fundamental problems that have been detected from this study, while firstly pointing out that no real in-depth assessment or study of the auto industry had been done in Canada since 1970, which I think is a shocking revelation in view of the fact that this is a very substantive basic part of our economy.

The Treasurer points out in his paper, very briefly as an introductory aspect thereto, that the auto industry in Canada has undergone considerable growth since the introduction of the auto pact in 1965, and of this I think we’re all aware and appreciative. However, this paper shows that while growth has been substantial in the initial period under the pact, major -- and I emphasize “major” -- problems have developed since 1969. Canada’s unfavourable balance of trade was a matter of considerable concern in the late 1950s and early 1960s. Most certainly, much of the imbalance was linked directly to Canada’s deficit in auto and parts trade with the United States. So there’s no doubt that the auto pact had beneficial returns.

The record discloses that, as a result of the pact, assembly and parts manufacturers moved quickly to modernize Canadian production facilities and to take advantage of the opportunities presented by the integrated North American market resulting from the pact. During the first five-year period, as the industry adjusted to this new environment, significant gains were made. Again, I think we are all aware of this and it’s certainly helped to increase the standard of living as a whole of all of the citizens of this province as a result thereof.

However -- and this is what apparently up to this point of time has avoided detection and scrutiny and therefore has not brought forward the concern that should have been and has now been brought forward on the initiative of the Treasurer -- since the advent of the 1970s serious problems have emerged and some of these gains that I was referring to have been eroded.

If I might elaborate for a few moments, in line with the commitment to strengthen the Canadian production facilities and integrate them into the North American market, auto assemblers did undertake a major investment programme under the Autopact. In real terms, capital spending doubled in the four years to 1968 over the level of the early Sixties. As a consequence, both assembly employment and productivity rose sharply in this period. By 1969, there were 6,000 more jobs in Canadian assembly operations than there had been five years earlier. Production workers in assembly were some 60 per cent more productive than they had been in 1964, in part resulting from significant capital expansion. Productivity in Canadian assembly operations was approaching the higher US levels and Canadian wages reflected these improvements.


It is obvious that throughout that initial period, Canadian parts and accessory producers also benefited by taking advantage of these opportunities presented by the pact and enjoyed growth equal to that of the assembly operations. Real investment expenditures in the parts industry in the five years from 1965 to 1969 averaged three times higher than the levels of the early 1960s and was accompanied by significant improvements in productivity and employment opportunities. The parts industry had 12,000 new jobs created in that area and in 1969 this sector accounted for one-half of total employment in the industry.

In addition, production workers in the parts industry were some 40 per cent more efficient than they had been in 1964. I think this is something we have taken for granted since that period of time -- this dramatic productivity improvement in both assembly and parts manufacturing. It has, I guess, been too long taken for granted and it is not until now, with the revelations in this paper, that we find that the free ride, if we want to use that term, is over.

With respect to the most recent employment trends, the number of jobs in Canada’s automotive industry has declined significantly from the peak of 100,000 in the record production year of 1973. The subsequent downturn in part, of course, has been related to the recession that both countries have been experiencing. There is no question of that but it also reflects a deterioration in Canada’s share of auto-related activity.

Overall, the growing imbalance is a major source of concern and, as I mentioned a few moments ago, in 1975 Canada’s deficit in automotive trade with the United States, in dollar figures, reached $2 billion. I might point out that a major Canadian objective in entering the auto agreement was, of course, to lower the costs of vehicles to Canadian consumers. In general, Canada’s objectives in entering into the auto pact were substantially realized.

The auto industry capitalized on the opportunity to improve its efficiency and expand employment. Trade in automotive products was brought more closely into balance and the price differential faced by Canadian consumers was reduced substantially. Again, I have to stress, as does the paper, that in recent years a number of fundamental problems have emerged in the industry which will require action if the auto pact is to continue to provide the benefits which it has in the past.

The major problem areas which are particularly of concern to the Ontario government are ones I would like to refer to for a moment or two. They are threefold. Firstly, there is the lack of momentum in productivity growth in the industry.

Mr. Warner: Are you going to read the whole book to us?

Mr. Williams: Secondly, the allocation of activity in auto assembly between the two countries is deteriorating. Thirdly, the share of the North American market hold by Canadian parts manufacturers is shrinking.

Mr. Warner: We should have another debate on silliness.

Mr. Williams: With regard to those three concerns, I would point out that the significant productivity gains which accrued to Canadian assembly operations as a result of the investment in new plant and equipment in the 1965-1968 period have changed, for in the subsequent period capital expenditure in the industry, measured in real terms, dropped to less than half the earlier rate with a corresponding impact on productivity.

Capital spending in the parts industry, on the other hand, has remained strong, relative to investment in assembly. The increase in capital investment in assembly in 1974 and 1975 is more encouraging but substantial improvements in Canada’s productivity performance will require an extensive period of increased capital spending.

Mr. Lewis: What’s going on?

Mr. Williams: Mr. Speaker, a comparison of Canadian and US investment levels emphasizes the relationship between capital spending and productivity. Capital spending by Canadian assembly facilities particularly has lagged considerably behind US levels in recent years.


Mr. Williams: The Ontario government employed its limited fiscal capacity to counteract this problem, Mr. Speaker, when it expected machinery and equipment from --

Mr. Lewis: Mr. Speaker, on a point of order.

Mr. Speaker: Order, please. The hon. member has a point of order.

Mr. Lewis: Mr. Speaker, as one who has spoken at great length in the House, I don’t want to depreciate the value of what a member said, but I do question the right of the member to read the attached budget papers into the House record word for word as though they were his own, subjecting the House now to nearly three hours of reading the budget papers. They were tabled, everyone has them, if the member has comments to make upon them, by all means. But isn’t this carrying the reading principle a little far, Mr. Speaker? This procedure has gone on as though it was the member himself, and he’s simply reading from the budget paper. It’s Quito ludicrous.


Mr. Speaker: The Chair would agree that under section 16(a)4 a member should not read unnecessarily from verbatim reports of the legislative debates. This is the point, I believe, that the hon. member is raising.

He could quote from or make reference to passages. But to read verbatim, I agree. I would ask the hon. member to only refer from time to time to the report rather than reading verbatim.

Mr. Williams: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I will quote relevant salient features of the paper as I have, to enunciate and bring to the House the importance of this document. I don’t think that we should be prevented from expressing our concerns on very important aspects of the budget as contained in the papers. There is no question that I have referred to and quoted at some length from some of the papers because these are the pith and substance of what the budget has been about. I think they’ve been overlooked in some of the debate that’s been going on in this House and as such we tend to lose sight of the resource material that substantiates many of the points made by the Treasurer in the presentation of this budget. I think there is a responsibility by myself and other members of this House to bring out these salient points because they are not a matter of record of this House. I think it’s time they were introduced and considered in a more --

Mr. Mackenzie: What were they tabled in the House for?

Mr. Williams: -- in-depth fashion. Too often a simplistic statement is made that so overgeneralizes a complex problem that not only the members of the House but the public at large lose sight of what is transpiring --


Mr. Williams: -- so I will accept that, Mr. Speaker. I explained to you the unabashed reference to many segments of the budget. But I will proceed in accordance with your comment. Those of the members who were present in the House were well aware I was making reference to the budget document. I have not yet met with the members of the House at all during my discussion. Unfortunately not many of the members were here to be aware of that fact, Mr. Speaker.


Mr. Speaker: Order, please. The hon. member for Oriole will continue.

Mr. Williams: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

So, Mr. Speaker, I had highlighted three major areas of concern that were referred to in this particular budget paper, and again I stress that these are the areas to which not only the members of this House, but also the federal authorities, I suggest, have to direct their attention immediately. I don’t think it’s a matter that can be left any longer. In fact, because there had been little done with regard to an assessment of the effects of the auto pact, few people apparently were aware of this emerging problem.

The paper concludes by pointing not that action is going to be required immediately and that primarily it has to be taken at the federal level. Because of international relationships with the United States, the federal government has to assume the initiative in this matter. But this does not mean -- and the budget paper makes it quite clear -- that the government of Ontario intends to sit idly by and watch nothing being done to remedy this growing problem.

While the budget paper unfortunately concluded with this note of pessimism, I think that a service has been rendered by the Treasurer in tabling this budget paper so that it could be discussed openly and put into the record of the House. I think that, therefore, is a significant accomplishment and I’m hopeful that benefits will flow from that.

Mr. Speaker, I have concluded commenting on and, to some extent, quoting from these budget papers, but again I say, without hesitation, they are really the significant aspects of the budget that the Treasurer had little time to more than gloss over in his opening budgetary remarks on April 6.

Before concluding my remarks, however, there are several other points that I want to allude to, because I think that they, again, set the direction in which this government in this province is likely to move. I refer, of course, to the provisions that are being made in the budget for tax cuts to be provided to small businesses. I think this is one of the most positive steps of the budget, one that has been too long in coming, I suggest.

It’s unfortunate, but it is a fact of life, that the small businesses of this province for too long have been bearing the brunt of big business and of government. They have, for too long, spent too much time being accountable to government or fending off big business and paying heavily for it in the way of taxes at the same time.

There is no question that the tax incentives offered by the paper will be more than welcomed by small businesses. It’s not only in the area of economics that the small businesses are being buffeted from all directions but also in the area of the labour market as well because of the generous attitudes of the federal government in its provision of funds to the unemployed. It has had some adverse effects, I suggest, on the work ethic of this country when people find that they can do better by drawing unemployment insurance than participating actively in the work force.

Mr. Mackenzie: That’s a lot of hogwash and you know it.

Mr. Williams: This has had a dramatic adverse impact on the small businesses of this province. No matter where you go throughout the province, small businessmen make this known to the politicians as one of their first immediate concerns. I think it is a concern that has to be given serious consideration. When benefits for not working exceed those for working, then I think there is something out of step --

Mr. Mackenzie: Why don’t you set up an employment agency?


Mr. Williams: -- and as such, I think this government has to show some initiative to see in what way we can assist small businesses to counteract some of these situations that are putting them under undue pressure indeed to survive and prosper in this province; in which we do encourage the initiative of free enterprise, regardless of the lampooning and downgrading by our socialist friends. I would point out that it is the private sector that has brought this province to --


Mr. Williams: -- the high standards of living that we enjoy today; to make this province one of the most desirable parts of the country to live in, if not the world. This is attributable to the private sector, Mr. Speaker. It’s not government that is productive, it’s the private sector. We must not lose sight of that fact. I’m sure that the small businesses throughout the province welcome this relief and some acknowledgement of their plight, and this will help to stimulate the industry in that sector and strengthen rather than to weaken the private small business community.

One of the other areas of concern, also in the private sector, has been in one of the major resource industries -- and that is in the mining industry. So often I sit in this House and listen to the socialist members from the northern Ontario ridings participate in a continual diatribe against the large mining companies with their excessive wealth and domination of the enslaved, downtrodden workers, and --

Mr. Germa: Mr. Speaker, on a point of order.

Mr. Speaker: Order, please. The hon. member will state his point of order.

Mr. Williams: I think it’s about time we put them --

Mr. Speaker: Order, please. The hon. member has a point of order.

Mr. Germa: I do not see a quorum, Mr. Speaker.

Hon. Mr. Kerr: Where are all your members?

Mr. Speaker ordered that the bells be rung for four minutes.

[On resumption:]

Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, on a point of order, it is interesting to note that the member for Sudbury called the quorum call and is not now here.

Mr. Williams: Mr. Speaker, I was starting to point out that not only was there need to recognize, as the budget does, the plight of the small businessman in the private sector but also the problems confronting one of the major resource industries in this province which is the mining industry. I was pointing out at that time that for too long now the official opposition has been presenting a picture, I suggest, of distortion of the real root problems which exist. Too much time is being spent on the supposed confrontation and inequities which exist between the so-called supposedly over-wealthy mining corporations and the manner in which they treat and suppress the workers of the north. I think sometimes the members from those northern sidings stay up late each night before they come into the House and watch reruns of the old movie “How Green Was My Valley” so they can come in here and talk about 19th century working conditions.

Mr. Foulds: As a matter of fact “How Green Was My Valley” and the conditions portrayed in that movie are far better than exist in many mines in Ontario today. When is the last time you flew out of Oriole?

Mr. Speaker: Order, please.

Mr. Williams: That’s how far I suggest they are from recognizing the real --


Mr. Speaker: Order, please.

Mr. Williams: -- high standards of working conditions which exist in this province today. For this reason I think it’s important that we put in perspective what the real nature of the problem is in this resource industry. If you will allow me, Mr. Speaker, there are two documents from which I am going to quote very briefly because I think they say it as eloquently and succinctly as anyone could. One is a statement of concern published in the first part of this year by the Mining Association of Canada. There’s one basic fundamental statement made in that document with which I don’t think anyone who is informed on the subjects can quarrel.

Mr. Foulds: You don’t think anybody can quarrel? You just ain’t heard nothing yet, buster!

Mr. Williams: It is stated as follows, Mr. Speaker, if I might quote:

“Mining is already excessively taxed in Canada. Any further government assault on its earnings must result in even further declines in exploration and development activity as well as risking the viability of many of our mines now in production. If this is allowed to happen, those areas in Canada most in need of development and those communities with the fewest economic alternatives would suffer the heaviest effects of the government’s actions.”

Mr. Foulds: And the government’s inaction.

Mr. Deans: That could have been written in the 1920s.

Mr. Williams: And now, Mr. Speaker --

Mr. Deans: The same argument has been used since the beginning of time.

Mr. Williams: -- to bring the matter closer to home --


Mr. Speaker: Order, please.

Mr. Williams: -- to the appropriate directions in which this government should have been moving and has indicated it will move, I would refer briefly to a statement and extract, I think, the relevant pertinent comment made by the president of the Mining Association of Canada in February this year. He pointed out that the mining industry is one which is highly cyclical.

“A very real danger to the industry’s future in Canada is the fact that the new tax systems applied to mining in much of the country have one element in common. They only make some vague kind of sense if it is assumed that the prosperity of the industry as it was in 1973-1974 was to be permanent.”

Mr. Deans: That’s the same argument they’re using for taking children out of --

Mr. Williams: That was the underlying assumption behind many of the changes in mining taxation in Canada.

Mr. Deans: That is the same argument you used last time.

Mr. Williams: The federal government looked at the apparently high profits of the industry and, extrapolating from the oil situation, assumed they would be permanent. And this was explicitly stated in the 1974 Ontario budget.

“During the past two years a world-wide shortage of raw materials has resulted in sharply higher metal prices and substantial windfall gains for the mining industry in Ontario. With the prospective demand for minerals likely to sustain current price trends into the future, it is only fair that we secure for the people a higher return for our natural resources.”

And then in concluding the address it was stated:

“The result has been a battle between the federal government and the provinces over which could extract the most from the mining industry, leading to a bewildering new array of tax systems which leave little room for investors. The new systems generally impose a savagely high level of taxation in good years, with no compensation in had ones. The result is to guarantee that the mining industry cannot possibly earn a reasonable rate of return over a complete business cycle.”

Mr. Foulds: Okay, what is a business cycle?

Mr. Deans: What is the rate of return?

Mr. Williams: And it continued:

“The fact is that, prior to the introduction of the new taxes, the average rate of return in mining was about the same as that for industry generally. Some small wonder that the level of exploration and new mine development has dropped alarmingly and that the industry’s growth is grinding to a halt.”


Mr. Williams: Now, I make reference to those comments of deep concern and the fact that this government recognizes that there is some substance to those observations and concerns. Not only has some allowance been made in the budget for non-productive mines, to assist them perhaps to get back into production, but it has also been pointed out in the Throne Speech and we can therefore anticipate that further action will be forthcoming from this government -- that this government will propose changes in the Mining Tax Act. As stated in the Throne Speech:

“By altering the tax treatment of exploration expenses, it will make exploration as attractive in years of low metal prices as in boom times. Exploration activity is vital to the mining industry, which has been a stable contributor to the economy of northern Ontario for more than thirty years and has maintained an employment level of 50,000 people.”

Mr. Foulds: How stable are Geraldton and Long Lac, and Madsen, where they are pulling out right now?

Mr. Williams: I think, Mr. Speaker, the last --

Mr. Foulds: What are they leaving behind in Ontario?

Mr. Williams: -- point that I would like to draw attention to in the general statements made by the Treasurer on budget evening was a very brief reference that he made to what he called the developing new high-technology industries.

Mr. Foulds: He did that in 1973 too. Nothing has happened since then.

Mr. Williams: There is one sentence that I would like to quote from that, and then elaborate for a moment or two if I might. It was stated by the Treasurer as follows:

“We have at the federal level a massive concern for industrial intervention and regulation where there should be a concerted and national drive for scientific and industrial research backed by joint public and private development of emerging high-technology industries.”


I think that all of us would, in fact, like to see the new technologies developed in our province, bringing the living standards of our people to higher levels. There is no doubt that in order to do so we have to keep pace with the technology that is being developed in other countries, such as the United States.

But in this area there is a type of inconsistency that arises that has to give concern to all of us, because in this development of the industries in a more highly technical fashion that type of industry is normally more dependent on the use of machinery, equipment and computerization with fewer actual individuals being involved in the operation of those facilities than is found in the more traditional type of industrial setting.

This is perhaps a point where, while it has been overlooked in the budget and perhaps should not have been commented on at length at this time, I think the interrelationship here has to be at least drawn attention to, that is, the consequences of the direction in which our society is moving into the highly technological age. With the advent of production being relied upon and left more and more to machinery and highly sophisticated equipment rather than to the individual worker, this is creating and is acknowledged even today, to be bringing about a new social evolution.

It is a social evolution in which we will find, according to the experts, by the end of this century, a situation where 20 per cent of the total population will be the extent of the work force to provide for the other 80 per cent of the people in this country.

Mr. Mackenzie: You told us private enterprise could do better than that.

Mr. Williams: Now that is a significant social trend of great magnitude. This is not necessarily a bad situation or bad trend but one that we can cope with if we come to grips with it now and not at the end of this century, because government will have a responsibility.

As is already recognized within our Ministry of Culture and Recreation, government will have a responsibility to help design and plan for this type of society of the immediate future where more people, free of any physical or mental ailments and well in body and in mind, will have no need gainfully to employ themselves in the traditional fashions that we have today, because so many fewer people will be needed to be that much more productive that they will not be required. Accordingly, the great concern of the time has to be to provide for these people appropriate leisure time, to plan for people who may never, from the day they are born to their dying day, have to be involved in the work force as it is traditionally defined today.

In listening to the experts who have brought this to the attention of the people in the public sector, the politicians, they are stressing now the need to give more attention to this situation. It has been demonstrated so many times how people who have worked actively through the whole of their lives and have come to a point of retirement in laying down the tools of their trade or giving up their profession, when they are left with idle time on their hands have not been conditioned or taught how to handle constructively and actively their leisure time. As a result, they have deteriorated not only in physical health but in mental health because they could not cope with actual freedom of time available to them.

As the retirement ages become lower and lower through the working conditions provided through this high degree of technology that is moving forward at a tremendous pace, it is I think understandable how more and more of our work force will not be the traditional work force of today, but there will be that very large and significant majority of our society that will not need to work and will not have to be in the position of feeling that it is an indignity not to work. It’s simply that our social framework will have been redesigned to accommodate this situation. But it can have dire social consequences if government does not assist in meeting this social evolution.

I suggest that we must increase our efforts in this field for governments a:t all levels to prepare for this social phenomenon that is quickly emerging and, I suggest, provide greater governmental resources to assist individuals to prepare their lives in an orderly, active, constructive way so that they will know how to utilize leisure time properly.

I have had the opportunity, Mr. Speaker, to travel abroad where some countries more than others in the European community have recognized this need and have already set about in a very massive way to establish community resource centres that permit people of all ages to actively engage themselves throughout every day and week in a meaningful, constructive fashion. I’m not speaking of leisure time in the sense simply of organized sports activities. I’m speaking of leisure time in the sense of educational, social and cultural activity, not just physical.

It’s in the whole spectrum of human activity that people are going to have to learn how to reorder their priorities. Not so much the new generation but the existing generation, who will find themselves moving into this era before their normally productive lifetime has ended. So there is this very heavy government responsibility to meet the challenges of the technological age, not from the point of economics and productivity but from the point of human resources, individually and collectively.

Resource centres are being built in other countries, and in fact in our own jurisdiction. I suppose --

Mr. Mackenzie: Now you want more government involvement.

Mr. Williams: -- those human resource centres are really more readily defined as some of the more innovative library facilities being built in our own metropolitan areas, where the library is not only a place for books but also for productivity, where one can involve himself in cultural activities, the theatre and things of this nature. These are the type of things I am referring to, to which I know our own Ministry of Culture and Recreation has been giving attention and has, in fact, as recently as the end of this year established a position paper with regard to the handling of leisure time. I’m only pointing out, Mr. Speaker, that we have to develop and expand upon this. I think that our government, through the Ministry of Culture and Recreation, will take the initiative in recognizing this problem and deal with the concerns of this decade and through to the turn of the century.

Mr. Speaker, these are some of the highlights and concerns of the budget as I have interpreted them. I don’t mind having been rebuffed or criticized for going into the budget in depth. There’s no more important 100ument in my judgement that comes down “ring the year than this document. Too often only lip service is paid to its content and thrust.

Mr. Cunningham: You’re not quitting?

Mr. Williams: Too often it’s convenient to forget the real meat of the document --

Mr. Cunningham: It’s easy to forget that.

Mr. Williams: -- and simply make generalized sweeping statements than can be distorted and taken out of context and misrepresent in fact what the government position is. So it’s important and I think necessary to get these matters on the record. I would hope that the members of the government will continue to ensure that the full presentation is on the record in any given period of time, end I will conclude, Mr. Speaker --

Mr. Cunningham: Did you cover the hospitals?

Mr. Williams: -- by making one last quote from the budget -- the Treasurer’s comments on budget night when he points out what the main thrust of the budget was to be and in fact is. On page 4 of the budget the Treasurer states, in the second paragraph, that it is his conclusion and the conclusion of this government, I suggest to you, Mr. Speaker, that the Ontario economy does not require government stimulation at this time as it did in the 1975-76 budget. Rather, the thrust of the provincial policy, as stated by the Treasurer, should be to rely on the private sector expansion to generate growth and employment. This does not imply a purely passive role for the government. As the Treasurer stated, it requires an active role in ensuring that the necessary resources flow into private activities and are not usurped by government spending and borrowing.

Mr. Speaker, the point is that it’s about time that this government, in reordering its priorities started to give at least the same amount of attention to the private sector and the need to support our economy as it has been giving in the area of social and health needs of this province.

Mr. Cunningham: You don’t care about the private sector.

Mr. Williams: So, Mr. Speaker, it is on this healthy note that I think this budget will carry this province and its citizens into another period of prosperity and will continue to prove that indeed Ontario is the province of opportunity.

Mr. di Santo: After the prolonged, unusual and somehow sadistic punishment inflicted on this House by the member for Oriole (Mr. Williams), I’ll try to come back to some reason.

I’d like to express the view of my party on some of the crucial problems that the Province of Ontario is faced with at this point and with which the budget fails to cope. I will try to prove at the same time, Mr. Speaker, the failure of this government to cope with the major economic problems of this province as well as its ineptitude in facing the same problems in relation to the federal government.

Both in the Speech from the Throne and in the budget presentation, the government of Ontario made clear that its priority is a commitment to the federal anti-inflation programme. To demonstrate its determination, the government made a series of decisions directed on its own terms at fighting inflation while at the same time protecting “the wellbeing of millions of citizens.”

For the well-being of millions of citizens, the government announced on Dec. 19 the closing of hospitals with the immediate consequence of laying off 5,000 workers. It announced the reduction of government grant increases to municipalities at a level of 7.8 per cent, and it restricted the provincial government’s budget for social services to an increase of only 5.5 per cent.

Everybody knows what that means for the well-being of millions of citizens of Ontario. By closing hospitals, the government created frustration and panic in small communities which were kept completely unaware of what this government had in mind. Thousands of families were confronted all of a sudden with the prospects of unemployment, and some communities like Goderich were faced with the prospect of losing their major employer.


By reducing funds for social services, the government has been able to create panic and frustration among the most vulnerable groups of our society, the senior citizens, the Children’s Aid Societies, the welfare recipients. By breaking the Edmonton commitment, the Conservative government of this province has proven that there are no limits to cynicism when a party has been in power for 33 years, without the control of an effective and solid opposition.

To begin with, by increasing grants to municipalities by only 7.8 per cent, the government violates its own commitment to transfer to municipalities a percentage equal to the increase of provincial revenue which this year is 20.4 per cent. Secondly, as a result of its decision, the provincial government is forcing municipalities and school boards to increase property taxes. The government is convinced that the taxpayers of Ontario will lay the blame on local government and remain unaware of the fact that the responsibility lies with the provincial government, this very government which is proposing this budget to us.

This is perhaps the most cynical example of a cruel exercise of power. There is no fairness and there is no honesty in what the government is doing. This is most clear when we see that the Conservative government of this province is forced to recognize the necessity of reforming the tax property structure even though it will not touch the old tax system. My colleague from Welland-Thorold (Mr. Swart) will explain in detail our position on this matter, based on the findings of our municipal taxation task force. I would like to point out once again, with an example the abhorrent results of the government decision to reduce grants to municipalities.

In Metro Toronto in 1976, the average property tax will be $1,000, out of which from 50 per cent to 60 per cent will go towards financing education expenses. That means that the pensioner with $269 a month is forced to pay almost one-third of his pension for property taxes. If we consider the increase of hydro, oil, gas and water rates, we can easily figure out what this government is doing to the well-being of thousands of pensioners who have been struggling all their lives to buy a house and now find themselves in a position in which this government is putting them of not being able to keep them, let alone survive in a dignified way.

There is no equity in the present tax system; there is no justice; there is no progressivity and there is no rationality. If you consider that at the very moment when a citizen retires with a consequent dramatic drop in income and when he does not have any children in the school system and the government is forcing him to pay the same amount of taxes, you will realize once again how hard it is hitting the most vulnerable part of our population. The government is attacking those citizens who are vulnerable and most defenceless, and the government knows that. In its hypocrisy it says it is doing that for the well-being of Ontarians.

My party has opposed and will continue to oppose the government on those policies. There is no political gimmick, no political expediency that will permit us to support or even to explain the government’s actions. They are dictated by a conception of exercise of power which is anachronistic in its historical development, remote from the needs of the people in its approach and substantially undemocratic, If in terms of human consequences, the government policies have tragic effects on people in general economic terms, they prove the basic inability of the Conservative government to manage the economy of the province.

After 33 years, the Conservatives are in the position of not having the least notion of handling the economic situation of the province in a way that makes sense. After having benefited temporarily from the post-war boom and, above all, from the increase of American capital invested in Canada and in Ontario, they are now faced with a situation of stagnation. Their only hope is the recovery of the American economy. That has been stated by the Treasurer (Mr. McKeough) in the budget and I can imagine who relieved he was last week when figures released on the American economy showed a surprising upswing in the gross national product in the order of seven per cent in the first quarter of the year. This is the best Easter gift our Treasurer could hope for.

How easy it is to jump on the bandwagon of a recovering and possibly buoyant American economy and go to the Ontario voters as the hero able to solve their problems without making the least effort. Too beautiful if it was true.

The fact is that the government of this province has not got an economic strategy for Ontario. It is relying heavily on factors, like the recovery of American economy, which is outside its control and it is raising issues like the gas and oil pricing and the auto pact as an internal tool to embarrass and fight the federal government. In this internal skirmish with the federal government, the Premier of Ontario (Mr. Davis) and his Treasurer make such value judgement mistakes that they are able to make fools of themselves by virtue of the very arguments they use.

Let’s take the issue of oil and gas pricing with the related trade problems. I think this is one of the central issues of the economy of this province. In its paper on Oil and Gas Pricing and Trade Competition: an Ontario View, the Treasurer of the province states:

“Increases in energy prices have a significant impact on the basic cost of living of Canadians. Clearly, further oil and gas price increases at this time are inconsistent with the objectives of the federal anti-inflation programme.”

He goes on to say that in 1975, a $1.50 increase in oil prices raised the consumer price index of Canada by 2.3 per cent on a full year basis. He estimates that an increase of $2 per barrel is apparently favoured by the federal government before the last paper released the other day on energy and energy strategy, would erode the effectiveness of the anti-inflation programme.

Despite this consideration the Conservative government of Ontario still subscribes to the anti-inflation programme in such an uncritical way that we are led to believe that either the provincial government doesn’t understand the implications of accepting the federal programme or it is acting in bad faith.

In the third paragraph of the Speech from the Throne of March 9, 1976, the provincial government states emphatically:

“Our province today faces some critical economic realities. The economic vitality and protection of its people requires, as never before, a capacity to make choices and set priorities. In recognizing this, the government of Ontario has supported and will continue to play its full role in the national anti-inflation programme as part of its greater commitment to protect the well-being of millions of citizens.”

It is difficult to reconcile the factual evidence of the impact of the oil pricing on the cost of living with the light-hearted acceptance of the federal anti-inflation programme. But that is not the only deficiency of this government.

If you look carefully at the so-called goals proposed by the government of Ontario in its oil policy -- and that came before the paper released the other day by the federal Minister of Energy, Alastair Gillespie -- we can see that on April 2, 1976, the Treasurer of Ontario states that the objectives are geared to:

“1. Expanding security of supply; maintaining and enhancing Canada’s competitive position. 2. Minimizing price impact on consumers. 3. Maintaining a credible relationship between selling prices and production costs. 4. Ensuring that the indexing factor for natural gas not be increased over the current 85 per cent at this time. 5. Recognizing the needs of oil-producing provinces.”

The present Ontario view, Mr. Speaker -- and I don’t want to emphasize at this point how ridiculous was the comment made yesterday by the Minister of Energy (Mr. Timbrell) -- the present Ontario view would be understandable if it was not the reflection of the position of our province at federal-provincial conferences held since 1973; and more exactly, a reflection of the dismal performance of the Premier of Ontario and the Ontario delegation at the first ministers’ conference in March, 1974 when the first of the three increases in Canadian crude oil prices were established.

Ontario’s position at that conference is best expressed in the Premier of Ontario’s statement to the Legislature on March 28:

“In spite of this cost, which will have to be paid by consumers in Ontario, I am convinced we have preserved for Canada the benefits of this country’s vast energy resources.”

This is unbelievable now. He stated:

“The increased price will permit rapid development of new energy resources. The lower-than-world price will maintain a competitive advantage for Canadian industry. Consumers in the eastern provinces will be protected from the high cost of imported oil. The western provinces will have a base on which to diversify their economic development. Canadians will have a stabilized price for at least a year [And he was right.] while the rest of the world faces uncertainty, and Canada will be spared a potentially divisive constitutional confrontation. I think yesterday was a reasonable solution for this province and for Canada.”

The statesman-like posturing aside, the government emerged from the conference with its dignity utterly tattered. The $2.50 per barrel increase announced by the Premier turned out to be $2.70. The confusion -- and this is memorable -- resulted from the fact that the Premier of Ontario and his delegation didn’t understand the difference between wellhead and city-gate prices. And that proves how much this government can be proud of its ability to manage not only the economy, but the minimum economic understanding of the facts.


In the months following the increase, the producing provinces and the federal government waged an often intemperate battle over the resources taxation field. The resulting distribution of the proceeds of the increase between the oil industry and government was evidently not to Ontario’s satisfaction.

“Apart from the disruption and uncertainty caused by the federal-provincial tax confrontation, oil companies emerged with a cash flow from $6.50 per barrel of oil only marginally above the cash flow from $3.80 per barrel of oil. In other words, almost all of the $2.70 price increase flowed into government coffers. The tax and royalty structure now in place loaves Canadian companies at a competitive handicap in terms of their ability to finance the exploration and development necessary to expand Canada’s energy reserves. This clearly indicates the need to reduce the royalty tax burden so that companies have adequate cash flow to finance the exploration and development necessary to expand Canada’s energy base.”

This is from the 1974 budget.

The statistical tables appended to the budget showed a cash flow increase of only eight cents resulting from the $2.70 increase, a picture which clearly served the industry’s aims. But in a pattern which emerged repeatedly in government dealings with the oil industry, there was no attempt made to evaluate the level of cash flow in relation to the need for exploration and development.

Ontario went to the second first ministers’ conference expressing opposition to any price increase on economic grounds and arguing that exploration and development should be financed through a reduction of the tax take from the then-existing price of $6.50.

This year again, the Treasurer is worried about what he calls “ill-timed price increases.” and I quote from page 17 of the budget statement:

“…from which far too much of the revenue will go to government rather than towards private exploration and development activities.

But what is curious is that in the other day’s Globe and Mail the president of the Canadian Association of Oilwell Drilling Contractors said that last winter their association achieved “virtually full utilization of their 285 land-based rigs scattered across western Canada,” which means that the exploration activity was widespread, almost at full capacity.

The 45-day price freeze suggested by the federal government, as you remember, Mr. Speaker, to exhaust inventories accumulated at the old price of $3.80 a barrel was accepted without comment. The $1.50 increase in the crude oil price unveiled in 1975 in the federal budget met with righteous indignation and energetic exchanges in the Ontario Legislature as usual, but nothing else. But barely 10 days after the federal budget the government reacted in the unpredictable fashion characteristic of Ontario Conservatives in an election year -- by freezing prices for 90 days and appointing a royal commission.

Exactly one year after the first ministers’ conference which decided the oil price increase, the government of Ontario is revealing once more its inability to express a policy in the interest of the people of Ontario. Once again the government expresses a position in the form of an Ontario view and nothing else. Once again the government of Ontario repeats the same mistakes.

To begin with, the Premier and his government show that, if nothing else, they are less sophisticated than the federal Liberals. Secondly, they are unable to reconcile their position as defenders of the interests of the people of Ontario with their deep hate for the federal government. The fact is that they are subservient to the same interests as the Liberals and, therefore, they are unable to defend the interests of the people they represent. Once again, in 1976 they are proposing a system of oil and pricing that is, to say the least, amateurish in its proposals, if not the fruit of incredible naivety.

When they propose a blanket price, as the Minister of Energy of Ontario does in his paper of but March, 1976, in effect they are accepting a market situation which stems from the determination of the big oil companies to market their oil in Canada at a price that only the oil companies can decide. All the estimates of costs are based on figures supplied by the oil companies. At this point, there is no serious possibility of the federal government controlling the price structure of oil in Canada, because all the figures come from the big corporation board rooms and the government of this country has abrogated all its rights to scrutinize one of the major factors of our present economic system. What is even more tragic is the fact that the petroleum industry is the centre of direct foreign investments in the Canadian economy accounting for almost 30 per cent of the total.

Since the Canadian subsidiaries of the major petroleum companies do not enjoy significant autonomy in Canada, that means that their policies are dictated by the corporations according to their global well-being. Since they are operating on a world scale, the companies are responding to the needs of their head offices, rather than to the needs of the Canadian economy and the Canadian people.

It has been the contention of this party that the pressure to move the price of Canadian oil upward is derived from the changed international oil situation and not from increased costs of extracting domestic crude oil. The justifications given by the oil industry for the increases -- limited Canadian reserves and higher production costs -- have focused attention in Canada on the extent of domestic producible oil reserves and the costs of extracting oil. Nothing has had more significant impact on Canadian petroleum policies than the enormous change in estimates of petroleum potential production -- producibility -- that have occurred since the spring of 1973. It is interesting to re-emphasize that, especially in the light of the new so-called energy strategy announced by the federal government the other day.

In June, 1973, the Department of Energy, Mines and Resources published estimates of Canadian petroleum producibility for the rest of this century, drawing its data largely from the petroleum industry. In its long-heralded report, An Energy Policy for Canada -- this is the first one in 1973 -- the department made two estimates for Canadian oil producibility, an optimistic and a pessimistic one.

According to the optimistic forecast, Canadian oil production will be increased from about two million barrels a day in the early 1970s to a peak of 10 million barrels a day by the year 2000. The pessimistic forecast predicted that Canadian oil output w odd increase steadily from the levels of the early 1970s to a peak of six million barrels a day by the year 2000.

In April and May, 1974, the National Energy Board held bearings in Calgary, Vancouver and Ottawa to determine the appropriate level of Canadian oil exports. These hearings were the occasion for a new set of estimates of Canadian petroleum producibility that were dramatically different from the ones set forth in the energy report a year earlier. Based again on information provided by the petroleum industry, the National Energy Board report made the following forecast: Conventional oil producibility would decline from 2.04 million barrels a day in 1975 to 1.29 million barrels a day in 1982, and oil sands producibility would increase from 60,000 barrels a day in 1975 to 220,000 barrels a day in 1982. The National Energy Board concluded that between 1975 and 1982 Canadian oil producibility would decline from 2.1 million barrels a day to 1.51 million barrels a day.

In terms of the specific sources of supply that make up the estimates for 1973 and 1974, the latter estimate is lowered for each area of supply. Producibility estimated for conventional crude in the Prairies is lowered, and the amount of oil sands production to the expected by the early 1980s is lowered. But the most important difference in the two estimates comes from the fact that the 1974 National Energy Board report assumes no production at all from the Canadian Arctic over the next decade. The previous report had assumed that the Arctic would prove a much larger source of crude oil in the future than would the Prairie provinces.

The 1974 National Energy Board estimate showed that Canadian demand for indigenous crude oil and pentanes would increase from 1,205,000 barrels a day in 1975 to 1,530,000 barrels in 1982. These figures assumed that Canadian crude oil would supply the market west of the Ottawa Valley and would supply 250,000 barrels a day to Montreal refineries after the extension to Montreal of the interprovincial pipeline. It was assumed that the balance of the market east of Ottawa Valley would be supplied with overseas crude oil. By 1982, the National Energy Board estimated, demand for crude oil east of the Ottawa Valley would amount to 12,000,000 barrels a day. Accordingly, Canada would need to import 950,000 barrels of crude oil daily to meet its eastern Canadian needs.

By 1982, according to the new National Energy Board estimates, Canadian producibility would lag behind the demand for indigenous crude. A shortfall would result, leaving Canada with no crude for export and with the need to supplement its supplies of crude with additional imports. By 1982, Canada would be a net importer of about a million barrels a day of crude oil.

The contrast between this scenario and even the most pessimistic of the 1973 projections is marked. The earlier projection stated that at prices up to $6 per barrel, Canada would meet all of its oil requirements, not just demand west of Ottawa plus 250,000 barrels per day, to the year 2010. At higher prices the horizon would be extended even further.


The change of estimates from 1973 to 1974 has enormous implications for the future of the Canadian economy. Any appropriate national industrial strategy will be heavily influenced by the availability and cost of energy. The oil producibility estimates of 1974 imply a much bleaker industrial future for Canada than do the estimates of a year before. It is these new estimates that provide the rationale for higher oil prices in Canada.

What is truly disturbing about the changes in estimates is that they came about so suddenly, with such unanimity among the oil companies and to date they have not been questioned seriously by any provincial or federal board of inquiry. Provincial and federal governments have simply gone along with the new revealed truth from the oil industry.

The price of crude oil has now been raised in two stages from the frozen level of $3 a barrel in September, 1974, first to $6.50 and now to $8. It is evident that the drive for higher prices will not be satisfied until the world monopoly price of $11 a barrel has been reached and that is an indication of the new energy policy provided the other day by the federal government.

The Economic Council of Canada, the government of Canada and the government of Alberta are all committed to this objective. In fact, the incredibly counter-productive excise tax on gasoline imposed by the federal government has already raised the effective crude price in Canada for consumers of gasoline to an equivalent of $11.50 at the wellhead.

It is our contention that the change in producibility estimates came at a time that was simply too convenient for the interests of the petroleum industry to be accepted at face value. It was entirely predictable that the companies would change Canadian producibility estimates when the Canadian crude oil price was frozen far below the world price.

The oil companies definition of reserves is different from that of the average person. As far as the companies are concerned, petroleum estimates are not simply calculations of physical quantities of petroleum that can be extracted. They are economic assessments of what can be produced profitably.

Since the companies invest on a global basis, it follows that the higher the world oil price goes the less relatively profitable Canadian production will be at any price frozen below that level. For oil industry planners, Canadian oil reserves can readily shrink or expand depending on the relation of the domestic price to the world price. The National Energy Board recognizes this in its report when it states that economic factors rather than technological problems were the key to Canadian producibility. The report stated:

“Various studies of geologically potential oil, gas and other resources leave little doubt that there are abundant deposits in widely scattered areas of Canada. The conversion of known resources such as the oil sands and heavy oils and inferred or potential resources, such as are expected in the frontier areas, into established reserves will require technological progress but, more importantly, will require favourable economic conditions for development, production and transportation ... given sufficient lead time and proper economic incentives, there is a good prospect that Canada could become self-sufficient in energy for a long period.”

Historical precedent should warn us, as well as the latest events in this area, that the current wave of concern about impending oil shortages in North America is part of a time-honoured tradition by which the petroleum industry forces up prices and profits.

The present energy crisis is by no means unique. There have been several similar crises in North America over the past half-century. In 1947, in 1935, in 1923 and in 1921 crises remarkably similar to the present one terrified consumers in North America. On each occasion the public was told that petroleum reserves were fast drying up and that higher prices were needed to sustain a renewed search for energy resources. In a copyright investigation for the Philadelphia Inquirer, published in July 22, 1973, two reporters, Donald Barlett and James Steele, looked at the earlier energy crises and concluded:

“During each crisis, oil companies complained of a shortage of crude oil and lack of incentives to find more ... the impression is left in the public’s mind that the United States is rapidly running out of its most precious fuel.

“None of this has changed much in 50 years of recurring oil crises. And, ironically, each time the crisis is resurrected, crude oil reserves in both the United States and the world usually stand at all-time highs.”

The flexible nature of reserve estimates was recently reviewed in a statement closer to home. On April 25, 1975, the Edmonton Journal quoted Don Stacy, Amoco Oil’s chief engineer in Calgary, as saying that with more expensive recovery techniques Alberta’s resources of producible oil could double from 6.4 billion barrels to 12.7 billion barrels -- almost double.

The evidence strongly indicates that the petroleum companies have altered producibility estimates to force up the domestic petroleum prices, thereby increasing their profits. We draw this conclusion on the presumption that nothing else would have caused the companies to change their estimates simultaneously at just the moment when such a change would profit them most. For governments to accept the changed estimates at their face value is the height of folly.

Of course, only the oil companies know for sure. Their monopoly of information concerning Canadian producibility means that the true facts of the case are locked in their offices. At present, the companies are the only organizations in Canada capable of taking complete inventories of the nation’s petroleum reserves. The monopoly of information in the hands of the petroleum companies makes a mockery of democratic debate concerning the nation’s economic policies.

Obviously the appropriate industrial strategy to be pursued by Canada is affected vitally by the long-run supply and cost of energy available to the nation. To assess what are likely future supply conditions in the Canadian petroleum industry, Canadians are required to act like detectives, trying to divine what this or that public assertion by the oil industry actually means. When preparing this speech, we were tempted to print in block letters on the cover the following warning: “The statistics quoted were released by the petroleum industry in Canada. They are subject to sudden dramatic revision without prior notice.”

Not only do the petroleum companies have a monopoly of information concerning the prospects of the industry in Canada, they also have great power to influence what Canadians hear about energy policies. Anyone who has ever watched Imperial Oil hold up the face-offs at Maple Leaf Gardens with its advertising knows that the companies have given up selling gasoline on Hockey Night in Canada.

Just yesterday, the Public Petroleum Institute of Canada presented a brief to the CRTC requesting a similar time because they consider the ads of Imperial Oil as political ones and not commercial ads. Imperial Oil is selling its approach to petroleum policy to the people of Canada by telling us gravely of the risks it is taking in our interests, of course.

Mr. Warner: Misleading.

Mr. di Santo: The advertising budgets of the oil companies, now directed to convincing people that higher prices are justified to assure adequate energy supplies, are undoubtedly competitive with the sums spent by all of the political parties in the past Ontario election campaign and certainly dwarf the budget of this political party.

Later on, we will have also something to say about the political contributions of the oil companies to some of the political parties represented in this House.

An hon. member: Not ours.

Mr. di Santo: We submit that democratic decision-making with respect to the nation’s industrial strategy will become possible only when a full-scale and impartial public inquiry into the change of producibility estimates is made. Such an inquiry would best be held at the national level.

The inquiry should have full powers to subpoena the records of the petroleum companies; moreover, it should investigate the relationships between the industry and public regulatory bodies such as the National Energy Board. But it is apparent that such an inquiry will ant be undertaken by the federal government and will not be considered by this provincial government in its undertaking with the federal government at the next first ministers’ conference.

Someone must fill this policy vacuum. If the federal Liberals cannot find the will to challenge the oil industry, perhaps the provincial Tories can find the courage they have lacked in the past. That’s what we are recommending.

The Public Petroleum Association of Canada released the results of a national public opinion poll which revealed that a majority of Canadians are in favour of placing the foreign-owned oil and gas companies in Canada under public ownership.

I mention this because, if the government of this province will take into account the possibility of negotiating with the federal government, since this is one of the most important provinces in Canada in industrial terms and in terms of energy consumption, I think it would be a concrete and realistic step that the government of Ontario could make in the interests of the people of Ontario, whom they so often mention they represent.


The Canadian Institute of Public Opinion, the organization which conducts the Gallup public opinion polls in Canada, was commissioned by the Public Petroleum Association of Canada to conduct the study. The poll, sampling the opinions of 1,038 adults across Canada during the first week in November, showed 51.1 per cent of the respondents in favour of nationalization of foreign-owned oil and gas companies, 30.6 per cent opposed and 16.7 per cent who didn’t know. They were responding to the following question:

“Canadians are facing rapidly rising prices for oil and gas as well as uncertainty concerning future energy supplies. In view of this, do you think the large foreign-owned oil and gas companies should or should not be nationalized by the Canadian government and operated as a public utility?”

For the Province of Ontario, the results were as follows: 53.6 per cent supported nationalization, 27.5 per cent were opposed, and 17.3 per cent didn’t know.

The poll tells us that although there are still significant numbers of people on both sides of the question, opinion is consolidating around the position of public ownership of Canada’s oil and gas industry. This is a critical development in the whole debate on foreign ownership. It shows that for the first time an absolute majority of Canadians are agreed on the means by which to establish Canadian control of the most powerful foreign-owned industry in Canada.

“It is a logical development fully in keeping with the Canadian experience that the option of a public utility should be favoured,” Mr. Laxer, a spokesman for the Public Petroleum Association, said:

“Seventy years ago a movement for what was called “public power” brought about public ownership of this province’s electric utilities. I believe we are seeing the beginning of a new phase in the movement for public power, this time in the field of oil and gas. Since then, those favouring public ownership have become an absolute majority while those who are content with foreign ownership have fallen significantly in numbers.”

But even if we accept uncritically what the oil companies are asking and the government is giving, we have to realize that the government of Ontario with its proposed oil policy is undermining the economy of this province.

If we take as a term of reference the federal budget of 1975, then it appears clear to us that the cost of production of oil was at that time $1 a barrel. I am referring to the federal budget. The companies get $2.75 after taxes. It is humanly logical to ask the Premier of this province (Mr. Davis). On what basis are you advocating the increase of oil price no matter whether it is new or old oil?

I should point out at this point, since the Minister of Energy of this province (Mr. Timbrell) has pointed out the benefits of the blended oil price, that it has been experienced in the States. But it is also true that the oil companies have used their reserve as a mean’s of speculation rather than as a means of supplying oil to the United States on the basis of blending prices with the new oil -- which means that when the companies think it is profitable they will extract the old oil; when they think that it is not profitable they will keep it underground.

Two years ago, the Premier was mistaken by agreeing to the oil price increase because probably at that time he didn’t know the difference between wellhead and citygate price. Has he not learned anything from that lesson? He should know by now that energy plays a major role in Ontario’s economy as well as in every modern industrial economy.

Just to bring to the attention of this House how tricky this government is when it deals with the people of Ontario, I’d like to bring to the attention of the House a document which is not an official paper, as was the budget presented to us by the Treasurer -- and not to mention the superfluous repetition given to us by the member for Oriole (Mr. Williams).

I want to bring to the attention of this House a document to which I attach a great importance, because it comes from Mr. Clifford Jutlah, who is an Ontario government economist with the Treasury. He makes an analogy which is very close to what my party has been saying for years. It is a statement released on Nov. 29, 1975, and is on the question of the relationship between energy and economy. He says:

“The question I would like to deal with is the relationship between energy prices and the Ontario economy. We all know what has happened to energy prices over the last couple of years. At the world level we have seen something like a five-fold increase in the price of oil. In Canada, it more than doubled. In the case of natural gas the recent increase -- something like 88 cents per mfc at the field level -- compares with 22 cents per mfc prior to Nov. 1, 1974.

“The price of coal has also gone up more than 250 per cent and the same story can be told for uranium.

“In order to understand the way in which those changes in energy prices affected the Ontario economy, let me outline some of the elements of the structure of the Ontario economy.

“Ontario turns out the equivalent of $33.7 billion of goods and services measured in 1961 constant dollars. This is the value of the real gross domestic product for Ontario; the estimate for 1975. The total employment is estimated to be about 3.6 million persons in 1975.

“Out of that total value of real gross domestic product, about 45 per cent originates from the goods sector with primary industries providing about four per cent, manufacturing 36 per cent, and construction about five per cent. Services account for about 55 per cent; transportation and communication facilities amount to about 11 per cent; trade, finance, real estate, insurance, about 25 per cent; community, business and personal services account for 14 per cent; the rise in government employment or public administration accounts for about five per cent.

“About 38 per cent of Ontario employment is in the goods producing industries, while 62 per cent originates in the service sector. Manufacturing alone accounts for about 27 per cent of the employment in the goods producing industries; and among the services, trade, finance, real estate and insurance about 22 per cent; community, business personal services, 25 per cent.

“Ontario in many senses is a mature economy. It is very well diversified and I think the prospects are for a continuation of the trends toward increasing output relative to employment in the service sectors.

“Now where dues energy fit into this picture? Let’s look at some of the main features of Ontario’s energy consumption profile in 1974. Ontario used about 2.8 quadrillion Btu. The important thing to know about sources of energy in Ontario is the following: Primary energy, in the form of oil, accounts for 41 per cent of the total; natural gas 24 per cent; coal 13 per cent; and indigenous nuclear and hydro power 20 per cent. Of course, a lot of the natural gas and coal that we buy is used to produce electricity. Electricity, taking account of the nuclear and hydro component, the fossil fuel component and imported electricity, accounts for 32 per cent of Ontario’s consumption of energy. Ontario then depends very broadly on oil sources of energy, primary as well as secondary, and we are far from being a nuclear state.

“Looking at energy used in another facet, we find that the residential sector uses about 42 per cent of the total oil purchased by Ontario and the business sector uses the remaining 58 per cent. The residential sector uses about 20 per cent of Ontario purchases of natural gas and these are direct purchases by the residential sector. Of course, ultimately the large part of the business sector purchases of electricity, natural gas and oil flows through the residential sector.”

Mr. Speaker: Perhaps the hon. member might wish to adjourn the debate at this point?

Mr. di Santo moved the adjournment of the debate.

Motion agreed to.

Hon. Mr. Welch: Mr. Speaker, before moving the adjournment of the House, may I indicate our programme for next week? On Monday afternoon we have the special discussion in the House, taking into consideration the whole question of oil and gas pricing in preparation for the meetings later that week in Ottawa; so Monday afternoon from 3 to 6 will be taken up by that discussion. There will be no sitting on Monday evening. On Tuesday afternoon from 3 to 6 we will do legislation as set out in the order paper. On Tuesday evening there will be the budget debate. Wednesday is committee day; the House itself will not sit. On Thursday afternoon we will do estimates from 3 to 5, private members’ hour from 5 to 6 as the House has directed, and on Thursday evening we will consider estimates. On Friday morning of next week we will resume the budget debate again. Are there any questions, Mr. Speaker, in connection with the programme?

Mr. Deans: To be clear, the order of the legislation is as printed?

Hon. Mr. Welch: Yes.

Mr. Deans: Fine. Thank you.

Hon. Mr. Welch moved the adjournment of the House.

Motion agreed to.

The House adjourned at 1 p.m.