32e législature, 2e session












The Second Session of the 32nd Parliament of the province of Ontario opened at 3 p.m. for the dispatch of business pursuant to a proclamation of the Honourable J. B. Aird, Lieutenant Governor of the province.

The Honourable the Lieutenant Governor, having entered the chamber and being seated upon the throne, was pleased to open the session with the following gracious speech.


Hon. Mr. Aird: Pray be seated.

Mr. Speaker and members of the Legislative Assembly, this House reconvenes at a time when this province, the nation and indeed the entire western world are faced with severe economic difficulties. While it is clear that the legislators of Ontario cannot be expected, by themselves, to reverse these difficult circumstances, we must nevertheless devote our abilities and our energies to putting Ontario on a more positive economic track.

Ontarians face an array of economic challenges. Unemployment and inflation, slow growth and lower productivity have characterized our national economy for almost a decade.

We in the government of Ontario have always believed that the creation and maintenance of productive employment must be our central concern. As such, we have urged the federal government to join with us in a program of economic recovery designed to stimulate noninflationary growth and create jobs for Ontarians.

But, more recently, we have been asked by the federal government to bear the additional burden of high interest rates. High interest rates remove incentive, make risk less attractive, particularly to the small business community, and as a result cause homes and farms to be lost or make it impossible for many of our citizens to even contemplate owning a house. They limit investment, reduce consumer purchases and reduce the demand for manufactured and other products to which employment in this province is so closely tied.

At the first ministers' meeting on the economy, held just over one month ago, the Prime Minister and his Minister of Finance set out the reasons why they were maintaining a high interest rate policy for Canada and suggested that certain consequences would follow if this approach were not maintained. One province after another outlined massive unemployment and slowdown in economic activity that was being caused by the federal policy and stated that the human and social costs arising from such a policy were unacceptable.

In spite of this united opposition, the government of Canada remained firm in its position that its current monetary policy, with all of the hardships that it causes, must be maintained if inflation is to be brought under control. While Ontario will continue to urge reconsideration of this approach, we must be realistic in recognizing that provincial plans may have to be developed on and around this federal intransigence.

Canada's difficult economic situation has been further exacerbated by a number of measures included in the recent federal budget, as well as by attempts by the federal Minister of Finance to transfer a larger share of the federal responsibility for the costs of health, post-secondary education and social services to the provinces. In terms of encouraging both consumer and investor confidence and in terms of developing the type of federal-provincial co-operation essential to economic recovery, the timing of these measures could not have been worse.

Ontario will therefore continue to press the government of Canada to develop a fiscal strategy more appropriate to the need for renewed economic confidence, investment and growth. In this context, we will continue to ask for a streamlining of the administrative procedure of the Foreign Investment Review Agency to ensure that beneficial investment is not prohibited from entering the country. Similarly, Ontario will stress the need for a continued renegotiation of the cutbacks of social services funding proposed by Ottawa.

If increased employment opportunities for both the short and medium terms are to be created in order to get unemployed Canadians back to work, effective federal-provincial co-operation will be required.

Nous sommes par conséquent très préoccupés par la position adoptée récemment par le premier ministre du Canada lorsqu'il a déclaré publiquement que le principe du fédéralisme co-opératif ne régissait plus l'exercice des relations fédérales-provinciales dans notre pays. Le gouvernement de l'Ontario a la ferme conviction que les deux paliers de gouvernement doivent collaborer si nous voulons réaliser le potentiel économique qui constitue notre patrimoine national commun. L'Ontario, comme par le passé, est toujours prêt à jouer son rôle.

3:10 p.m.

Consequently, we are extremely concerned with the public position recently adopted by the Prime Minister that the principle of co-operative federalism no longer governs the exercise of federal-provincial relations in this country. It is the strongly held view of the government of Ontario that both levels of government in Canada must work together if we are ever to achieve the economic potential which is our common national heritage. As such, Ontario, as in the past, stands ready to play its part.

Ontario realizes, however, that with or without federal co-operation, and despite the limited impact that any single province can have upon a situation that is caused by both national and international circumstances, we must take those initiatives that we consider to be both helpful and appropriate to combat the impact of high interest rates, high inflation and high unemployment upon our citizens.

Later in this session the Treasurer (Mr. F. S. Miller) will introduce a budget designed to address those economic challenges we face together as Ontarians. For example, this budget will provide for job-creating measures of the following nature:

Global funding for youth employment will be increased and greater emphasis given to creating job opportunities for out-of-school youth on a year-round basis.

The capital works program supported by this government will be accelerated, thus providing employment in the construction industry in a number of Ontario centres at dates earlier than had originally been scheduled.

A wide range of initiatives will be taken to increase the stock of rental housing, particularly in the area in and around Metropolitan Toronto, thus meeting a pressing social need, while at the same time creating jobs in the building trades.

The recently announced forest improvement project will be expanded. This will allow the forest industry in Ontario to recall laid-off workers and maintain payrolls to the fullest extent possible during the current downturn in the market.

Special employment initiatives will be adopted by the Ministry of Natural Resources to upgrade and accelerate the construction of resource access roads, thereby creating hundreds of new jobs.

Federal authorities will be encouraged to consider new programs by which funds normally paid as unemployment insurance can be directed and supplemented to provide employment in other areas of worthwhile endeavours.

The current economic downturn has led to a number of plant closures and bankruptcies. In order to enhance the chances of saving such companies, the government will attempt to determine which companies can be saved through our highly successful buy-back program.

We are particularly conscious of the difficulties being experienced in the farming industry. While all sectors of the economy are suffering in these difficult times, agriculture is least able to withstand high interest rates and a cost-price squeeze. We have already provided major financial support to beef producers to help them weather a difficult year. In addition, we have recently implemented a broad-based farm assistance program to reduce the interest burden and maintain the supply of essential working capital.

My government will bring forward in this session a package of additional measures to assist agriculture further.

Federal aid mechanisms such as the Farm Credit Corporation and small business bonds are inadequate to meet current financing needs of the farming community. Therefore, Ontario's farm adjustment assistance program will be broadened to help a greater number of farmers.

The government recognizes the problems faced today by young farmers. It places a high priority on continuing to attract young people to establish themselves in this vital sector of our economy and will introduce a new measure to provide them with startup capital assistance.

The government will legislate improved financial protection to ensure that producers are paid in the event of financial default by buyers.

The government will increase the funding for the Foodland Ontario program and introduce new identification standards for food products in order to stimulate sales of Ontario food products and reduce our dependency on imports. This emphasis, along with export expansion and research, will be incorporated in a reorganized program and administrative structure to be announced by the Minister of Agriculture and Food (Mr. Timbrell).

The government is committed to improved income security for our farm producers through an effective long-term stabilization plan for national commodities. Ontario is prepared to take a leadership role in developing and financing such a national plan, which would involve the federal and provincial governments, as well as the producers.

While Ontario is taking these and other measures as may prove feasible and necessary during the course of this session, attention must continue to be paid to the need for an economic base for the medium and longer term. Such positive actions will be aided considerably by a general upturn in economic conditions in North America predicted for later this year.

The government of Ontario has ensured that a comprehensive program exists for economic growth. The cornerstone for the Ontario approach is, of course, the BILD program, which was launched during the last year. The success of this effort has been encouraging, but further advances will be made and, as in so many areas of economic activity, can be made to be more effective if adequate co-operation is forthcoming from the federal authorities. Last year, it will be recalled, Ontario called upon the government of Canada to join us in a number of initiatives that would be of national benefit. To date, Ottawa has been slow to respond.

We would hope, however, that recent attempts by Ottawa to restructure government organization to deal with economic development will ensure that priority investment projects are undertaken in all parts of this country. In Ontario, for sake of emphasis, we would note that we seek co-operation in such ventures as the planning process in allocating funds to an upgraded rail service in Ontario; upgrading drydock facilities on the Great Lakes; developing an Ontario Hydro fusion research program; establishing a centre for research in toxicology; developing a program for industrial mineral development; accelerating development of new rapid transit projects; and establishing an autotechnicentre.

There is no doubt that the greatest single impediment to the revitalization of the economy of this province is the current state of the North American automotive industry. While billions of dollars have already been spent to refit and retool plants so as to produce cars that are more in keeping with new consumer demands, the market, nevertheless, continues to diminish under the combined forces of high interest rates and increased competition from lower-cost manufacturers abroad, particularly the Japanese. Ontario believes that neither this government nor our federal counterpart can simply stand by and let events continue to take their own course. This matter is too important and the consequences too serious to follow a path of laissez-faire liberalism.

As a result, we have entered into discussions with federal authorities and business and labour leaders to develop an appropriate Canadian reaction to the current situation. In our opinion, that course must include arrangements that, in the short term at least, restrict the number of imported cars being brought into this country in order to allow our own industry sufficient time to regear itself for the new circumstances that prevail within the industry and, at the same time, to reach an arrangement with the foreign manufacturers to increase Canadian content in their products to a level of not less than 85 per cent.

3:20 p.m.

Further, this province will urge and encourage the federal government to join with us in promoting an educational program that will make our citizens more aware that the welfare of all of us is related to the health and vitality of our automotive and other manufacturing enterprises and that that health can only be maintained by appropriate purchasing practices by Canadian consumers. The buy-Canadian program has been in place for some time now. Its message, however, must be made more emphatic and the results must be more pervasive.

Ontario's efforts to restructure and revitalize industry will not be confined to the automotive sector. Consistent with the economic development initiatives embodied in the BILD program, the restructured Ministry of Industry and Trade Development will devote itself to preserving existing jobs as well as creating new job opportunities, enhancing our industrial capacity and developing new market opportunities throughout the world.

The new ministry will move quickly to expand our Canadian market development resources to assist business, to liaise with other provincial governments and to gather and distribute critical market information to Ontario companies. A series of wide-ranging trade missions to expand and intensify Ontario's trade opportunities will be undertaken, particularly in Europe, the Pacific Rim, Latin America and Africa.

At the same time, this province must build upon its initial successes to ensure that we stay at the forefront of the dramatic changes and opportunities that are currently taking place in those areas of industrial development generally called microelectronics and high technology. Members are aware that we are proceeding with the development of new technological and research centres throughout the province, as well as the creation of the new IDEA Corp. to ensure more effective co-operation between industry and our educational institutions in the development of meaningful industrial research. These initiatives will be the responsibility of the new ministry.

Building on the continuing success of the Urban Transportation Development Corp., both in Canada and abroad, and the significant opportunities for transportation technology export abroad, UTDC and the Ontario International Corp. will pursue significant new joint marketing initiatives in a complementary way in Europe, Asia and South America.

In line with our efforts to improve the representation of our interests outside Canada, the Ontario office in Brussels will become fully operational, and the present Paris office will be upgraded from a trade office to one representing the full range of Ontario's interests, political and cultural, as well as economic.

New or rapidly expanding small businesses are often constrained in their growth by an inability to acquire equity venture capital. As a positive step in alleviating this problem, the board of governors of the Toronto Stock Exchange recently put forward a proposal for the creation of a new venture capital listing for junior resource and industrial companies, subject to exacting rules of disclosure and standards of protection for investors. This new listing will improve the access of entrepreneurial companies in Ontario to public equity markets and to the financing necessary for continued growth and investment. The government of Ontario urges the Toronto Stock Exchange to proceed with its proposal, subject to the usual review by the Ontario Securities Commission.

As a complementary measure aimed at stimulating investor interest in Ontario-based junior companies which list on the proposed venture capital section of the Toronto Stock Exchange, the government of Ontario will work closely with officials of the exchange to introduce an incentive program for investors purchasing new issues of shares in Ontario junior companies. This joint public and private sector initiative will ensure that innovative and entrepreneurial firms in the province continue to grow and create new employment opportunities for all Ontarians.

One of the essential components of stable economic development is a secure source of skilled manpower to meet the needs of business and industry. While Ontario's training infrastructure is without parallel in Canada, more can be done to meet changing needs. We reaffirm our commitment to the development of skilled manpower in this province and we will work to ensure that adequate funding and design are committed to occupational training. Particular attention will be paid to the introduction of a wage incentive program for the training of high-level software development specialists.

Ontario is prepared to work co-operatively with the federal government to improve the manpower training system. However, we are convinced that no significant advance can be achieved without meaningful and substantial input from the parties most directly concerned -- labour and management. Accordingly, Ontario will expand the membership of the Ontario Manpower Commission by the addition of senior representatives from the labour and management communities.

Despite current economic trends, the tourism industry has within the last two years demonstrated its significant growth potential. Over 28 million United States visitors entered Ontario in 1981, representing a significant increase over the previous year. This trend, coming as it does from the United States, Ontario's largest foreign tourism market, is evidence of the efforts which the industry is making under the umbrella of the government's "Yours to discover!" marketing program. These visitor increases translate into additional jobs in our hospitality sector, now estimated to employ 500,000 Ontarians.

In meeting both the economic and social needs of our province, many programs have been developed over the past several years which relate to tourism and recreational development. In order to maximize program development and delivery and to exploit the full economic potential of tourism development and recreational usage of Ontario's resources, my government is creating a new Ministry of Tourism and Recreation.

Additional resources will be provided to expand the successful tourism marketing program, particularly in the United States and Europe. This initiative signifies the high priority being placed on both the economic and social value of these programs to the people and the economy of Ontario.

Ontario will continue to seek fairness and balance in management-labour relations throughout the province. As a result, in consultation with the ministries of Labour and Industry and Trade Development, measures to provide protection for employees under the Employment Standards Act will be advanced in such areas as unjust dismissal and protection of severance pay. Proposals will be brought forward to strengthen existing equal pay provisions; to further the advancement of women in the work force in both the public and private sectors; and to extend the counselling and training of workers affected by plant closures.

In addition, the government will continue to confer with interested parties with respect to reform of the workmen's compensation system of Ontario along the lines outlined in the white paper on workers' compensation tabled during the last session.

Energy users in all sectors of the Ontario economy have been making significant efforts in energy conservation. To support these efforts, the government will undertake an expanded program of education, drawing on the results of our investment in energy research and development, to provide citizens and businesses with the information they need to make their own sound decisions. A special focus will be to provide those in the building industry with essential information on conservation techniques and materials in order to reduce energy consumption in both new and existing homes.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Food and the Ministry of Energy will implement an expanded agricultural energy management program to support Ontario agriculture in adjusting to changing energy supply and price so as to maintain its present efficient and competitive position.

Initiatives will be taken this year to advance the agricultural and industrial potential of the Bruce Energy Centre. Specifically, a greenhouse complex will be developed, designed to replace imported products and to expand Ontario's greenhouse industry. At the same time, a major national and international marketing program will be undertaken to attract industry to the centre to take advantage of the low cost and secure supply of steam energy available from the Bruce nuclear power development.

3:30 p.m.

Ontario's electrical power system continues to be a cornerstone of the provincial economy and the envy of other jurisdictions. Its continued vitality and development to meet our needs are essential to sustaining economic growth.

Ontario Hydro is currently engaged in the largest capital construction program in its history. Three nuclear generating stations are under construction at Bruce, Pickering and Darlington and, as noted in the BILD report, are "directly responsible for thousands of construction jobs and the wellbeing of a multitude of sophisticated supply industries."

My government remains firmly committed to having Ontario Hydro reduce the acid gas emissions from its coal-fired generating stations by half by the year 1990. As a public corporation, Ontario Hydro must set an example for others to follow. Hydro will undertake whatever steps are necessary to met the emission levels stipulated in the government's regulation. These steps will include designing and retrofitting scrubbers, installing some 700 special burners, increasing use of blended and low-sulphur coal, and replacing coal generation with new nuclear and hydraulic energy. By way of this program, Ontario Hydro, under the direction and regulation of my government, will provide leadership in the reduction of contributions to acid rain.

In the long term, Ontario will have to change to an economy based primarily on renewable and essentially inexhaustible energy sources. A fuel of great promise in this regard is hydrogen. In 1981 the government established the Institute for Hydrogen and Electrochemical Systems as a focal point for advanced research and development in these new energy systems. In addition, the Ministry of Northern Affairs will co-ordinate programs to stimulate and encourage pilot projects using peat and waste wood.

My government, through the Ministry of Transportation and Communications, in cooperation with Canadian National Railways, will undertake a review of long-term options for improved commuter rail service. The ministry, together with GO Transit, will also review bus service and commuter parking facilities.

It is recognized that the planned withdrawal of Via Rail services to a number of communities north and east of Toronto on September 7, 1982, will cause hardship and inconvenience to hundreds of daily commuters. As an interim measure, my government intends to replace certain of those services using GO Transit. Stouffville, Unionville and Agincourt will have their one Via train per day replaced by GO rail service. GO bus service and other bus systems will provide services further along this corridor. For commuters in the northern corridor, GO rail service will commence as far north as the Bradford area. Bus service will be improved to carry passengers north to Barrie from the end of the rail service.

The Ministry of Transportation and Communications will be introducing a child restraint program in the form of legislation during the spring session. These amendments to the Highway Traffic Act will provide for mandatory restraints for children under the age of five, or 50 pounds, travelling in automobiles in Ontario. This initiative will permit maximum protection for small children.

In northern Ontario, specific social and economic activities will be pursued to enhance the quality of life and the breadth of economic opportunity to that important region of Ontario. The government will take a significant step to deal with the needs of elderly people in the small and remote communities of northern Ontario.

In conjunction with the ministries of Health, Community and Social Services and Municipal Affairs and Housing, the Ministry of Northern Affairs will initiate a special program of assistance to these communities to establish small facilities suitable to the provision of extended care services for elderly people that will allow them to receive the care they need closer to home.

The ministries of Health and Community and Social Services will examine jointly the problems of those homes providing extended care for elderly people who require special nursing services.

In Ontario we continue to enjoy one of the finest health care systems in the world and the government remains committed to its continuing excellence, despite attempts by the federal government to reduce its levels of support.

While we maintain this excellence, we intend to focus in some very direct ways during the coming year on the twin problems of heart disease and cancer, which continue to plague us. The Ministry of Health will undertake a range of health promotion programs to encourage healthy habits aimed particularly at the young people of the province. At the same time, the ministry will join with the cancer treatment centres of Ontario to provide them with newly developing diagnostic tools.

We intend immediately to assist Princess Margaret Hospital to install a nuclear diagnostic system so that it will have the safest and most advanced method for diagnosing malignant tumours in their earliest stage.

As the next step in the development of an advanced life support system within the emergency services of Ontario, we will be developing special advanced training programs for ambulance personnel and begin the establishment of a province-wide program of utilization of these services. We will also introduce special pilot programs with other governments and voluntary agencies to teach cardio-pulmonary resuscitation techniques to a broad section of the population.

Planning is currently under way for the implementation of the recently announced changes to the homemaker programs of Health and Community and Social Services. These are designed to improve the availability and accessibility of services, and the assessment of needs particularly with respect to frail elderly people and the physically handicapped. The Ministry of Health is responsible for the program, which will be operated by local home care agencies. It will be phased in, commencing in 1982, with five or six areas which already have Health's acute and chronic home care programs. This initiative will also provide relief from the burden that had been carried by municipal social services.

My government is committed to fostering the independence of seniors and recognizing the valuable contribution of their talents, experience and skills. In keeping with this commitment, a seniors secretariat has been established within the Provincial Secretariat for Social Development. The seniors secretariat will develop a co-operative working relationship among government, voluntary organizations and senior citizens to ensure that appropriate planning takes place to respond to the increasing number and changing expectations of seniors in the province.

My government has demonstrated a major commitment to meeting the need for day care services that has resulted from such societal changes as the growth in single-parent families and the increased involvement of women in the work force. This commitment will be maintained, recognizing that the government must work in partnership with others such as parents, municipalities and the private sector. Support of parent-sponsored programs, particularly those that made use of empty space available in schools, will be encouraged to develop appropriate programs for those in need of day care. Recently established supports for the informal network of day care services will be maintained and expanded. It is only by recognizing the ongoing role of all the major partners in the provision of day care services that an appropriate range of programs for children will be provided.

Le gouvernement poursuivra vigoureusement sa politique de prestation de services en langue française à la population francophone de l'Ontario. Plusieurs mesures seront prises en 1982 pour améliorer les services en langue française offerts par le gouvernement de l'Ontario et ses agences. En particulier,

(a) nous allons présenter des amendements visant à faciliter l'acceptation des testaments et des autres documents d'enregistrement des titres fonciers en français;

(b) nous allons proposer un amendement à la loi municipale afin de donner le choix aux municipalités de mener leurs affaires en français ainsi qu'en anglais;

(c) nous allons améliorer les capacités d'un certain nombre de ministères et agences en matière de services en français, aussi bien dans les bureaux centraux que régionaux, selon les besoins.

3:40 p.m.

Legislation will be introduced to establish the new Ministry of Citizenship and Culture. Its mandate will be to advance and encourage responsible citizenship among the residents of Ontario. This will be accomplished by policies that recognize the pluralistic nature of Ontario society and stress the full participation of all Ontarians as equal members of the community. We will encourage the sharing of cultural heritage, while affirming those elements of Canadian identity held in common by all. To this end, the ministry will assist in the stimulation of cultural expression and cultural preservation, including the development of individual and community excellence.

The Ministry of Citizenship and Culture will be designated as the lead ministry for multiculturalism in my government.

Effective law enforcement is one of the cornerstones of a civilized and just society. With this in mind, my government reconfirms its commitment to maintain the present high quality of policing in Ontario. New initiatives will be presented with respect to civil procedure in the courts through a court of justice bill. Ontario will also firmly opt in to all the provisions of the charter of rights in the new constitution.

A systematic review of all Ontario legislation and government programs will be undertaken to ensure that my government's commitment to the provisions of the charter of rights and freedoms is met. My government will also undertake a review of existing legislation with respect to the primacy of the recently passed amendments to the Human Rights Code. This review will be completed and the necessary adjustments made within the two-year period in the act.

One of the major accomplishments of the Legislature in the last session was the passage of a comprehensive new Human Rights Code which, among other things, extends protection to the handicapped. It is the intention of the government to proclaim the legislation in June to coincide with the 20th anniversary of the passage of Ontario's original human rights code, the first in Canada.

We in the government of Ontario shared in the pride and joy of all Canadians in the successful resolution of our constitutional differences with the signing of an accord on November 5 of last year. We look forward with great anticipation to the visit of Her Majesty the Queen, when our constitution will finally be brought home.

We will continue to work towards bringing Quebec into the constitutional consensus. Further, we remain committed to the full participation of aboriginal peoples in the definition and entrenchment of their rights within our constitution, and a conference of first ministers will be held to complete the work on the constitutional accord.

Overall, Ontario will seek to provide stability and opportunity at home while urging more balanced economic policies upon the government of Canada.

Our own resources in Ontario, both human and natural, and our inherently strong manufacturing base, can combine to shape an economic recovery of impressive proportions. For the unemployed this cannot happen fast enough.

Ontario must and will do all that it can, within the limits of its own financial resources, to improve the climate for the creation of jobs, sustain economic growth and enhance opportunity. We must do so both within our means and with all the means at our disposal.

We shall continue to pursue a pro-growth, pro-investment, pro-Canadian participation in our economic program, stressing the accelerated development of our small business, agricultural, manufacturing, export and high-technology sectors.

It is during challenging times that this government and this parliament face the most difficult yet important task of serving, with both sensitivity and humanity, the interests of the people we are all most fortunate to serve, the people of Ontario.

In our Sovereign's name, I thank you.

God bless the Queen and Canada.

The Honourable the Lieutenant Governor was then pleased to retire from the chamber.


Mr. Speaker: I beg to inform the House that to prevent mistakes, I have obtained a copy of His Honour's speech, which I will now read.

[Reading dispensed with.]



Hon. Mr. McMurtry moved, seconded by Hon. Mr. Wells, first reading of Bill 1, An Act to revise the Reciprocal Enforcement of Maintenance Orders Act.

Motion agreed to.

3:50 p.m.


Mr. Speaker: I beg to inform the House that a vacancy has occurred in the membership of the House by reason of the resignation of Stuart Lyon Smith, MD, FRCP, former member for Hamilton West.


Mr. Speaker: I further beg to inform the House that Mr. David Robertson Peterson, QC, BA, LLB, member for the electoral district of London Centre, is recognized as leader of Her Majesty's loyal opposition.


Mr. Speaker: Quite obviously, everyone is very happy with that announcement. I would like to add my personal congratulations as well.



Hon Mr. Wells moved that the speech of the Honourable the Lieutenant Governor to this House be taken into consideration on Thursday next.

Motion agreed to.


Hon. Mr. Wells moved that commencing tomorrow, March 10, this House will not sit in the chamber on Wednesdays unless otherwise ordered.

Motion agreed to.


Hon. Mr. Wells moved that the first day for consideration of private members' public bills and orders be Thursday, April 8, 1982, and in accordance with the order of the House passed December 18, 1981, the order of precedence established during the first session be continued during the second session.

Motion agreed to.


Hon. Mr. Wells moved that the select committee on the Ombudsman be authorized to sit on Wednesday, March 10, 1982.

Motion agreed to.


Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, before moving the customary adjournment of the House, on the first day it is normal for the leader of government to say very little. There will be members opposite who will wish that tradition would continue and I can assure them the only reason I have leapt to my feet is to express in a very public way to the new leader of Her Majesty's loyal opposition my congratulations and personal best wishes.

There was a period when I was not sure I would be here this afternoon to express those best wishes, but I am here, feeling not inhibited in any way, manner, shape or form, and I did want to take this occasion publicly to express my best wishes to him. I think it is obvious that we will have an opportunity, whether it starts Thursday, Friday, Monday or Tuesday, to reminisce together over some of the contradictions that flowed from that great convention where he was a participant, to look at some of the others, to analyse the policies that emerge and flow from that great meeting and how one reconciles these, which we will do in the fullness of time.

I also know that the new Leader of the Opposition (Mr. Peterson) is one who endorses the feeling it is always better the second time around. I know what he was feeling at that particular convention.

Mr. Peterson: Some of us can do it.

Hon. Mr. Davis: I have to say the Leader of the Opposition should be careful not to provoke me today. I really am in very good humour. I don't want to trot out some of the lines I have been saving for four years, knowing full well what his ambitions have been.

While I am on my feet I would congratulate in a very sincere way the member for London Centre and also extend my best wishes to the members of his family. I really did not watch the convention that carefully, but I did see parts of it and I do have to say as an unbiased observer it was the wife of the member for London Centre who convinced more of the delegates than he did. It was quite obvious her background and her prior philosophical involvement had much to do with it.

I am taking longer than I should, Mr. Speaker, but I do know the Leader of the Opposition was looking for an opportunity to permit his caucus to applaud once again and to justify the carnations they are wearing today -- that they purchased in Brampton.

I do know something of the personal sacrifice that is involved on the part of anybody assuming a position as leader of a political party. In a public sense I would like to express my best wishes to the new leader of the New Democratic Party who does not have a seat in this House. He will understand when I say we will do our very best to make sure that he does not get a seat in this House.

I say that in a very kindly sense, Mr. Speaker, because I really was looking for him in your gallery, but he is not there; he is on the floor of the House. The last time I had the occasion to welcome him to this House he was up there in your gallery, sir -- I was going to say as a student revolutionary, but that would be unfair -- as a student activist. As I recall he was seeking some modest participation by students in the governing of our universities to the extent there should be 85 per cent student representation and 10 per cent from the general public.

The leader of the New Democratic Party has moderated his views since that time but I do recall him sitting up there and that being the issue of the day. I welcome him to the floor of the House and wish him well in his very onerous responsibilities. In a very kindly and what some might describe as a somewhat fatherly fashion we wish him well on the floor of the House. We will do our best to see that his participation is limited there.

We look forward to the member for Port Arthur (Mr. Foulds) conducting the affairs of the party on his behalf, knowing full well that he will speak as the leader would speak -- he is not nearly as articulate, but none the less -- How was it described in some of the platform appearances? In that rather bland fashion some of us have found to be successful for some 12 years here.

With those very few words, I do welcome the new leader of the Liberal Party and the leader of Her Majesty's loyal opposition to wish him many years in that position of responsibility. To the leader of the New Democratic Party, my personal best wishes for his personal success.

Mr. Peterson: I am sure, Mr. Speaker, you are very happy the Premier (Mr. Davis) has a toothache today. Can you imagine how long he would have gone on if he had not had one? I am sure when the Premier looks across the House and sees the energy and enthusiasm in our party today it must take him back some 30 or 40 years when he used to have that in his own party.


Mr. Peterson: For the first time in my life I was completely at one with the Premier when he complimented my wife, who is with me today. I do appreciate that. I notice the Premier must feel he is in some trouble because he has his family in full force to help him.

4 p.m.

I do want to tell the members that I am deeply honoured to have been chosen the leader of my party at the convention some two weeks ago. It is an honourable position. It has a long tradition with some success and some failure. I am honoured to walk in the shoes of Messrs. Mowat, Hepburn, Nixon and Smith. I assure members that we will attempt to discharge our responsibilities to the very best of our ability.

Sometimes in the partisan fray we forget that we are all, in the end, dedicated to the very same responsibilities, and that is to the welfare of the people of Ontario. Even though I am sure the Premier and I may view our responsibilities differently on occasion -- as I will with the Premier, as I will with Mr. Rae -- I know that good faith and respect will be the operative words in this House.

If I may, I would also like to congratulate Bob Rae on assuming the leadership of the New Democratic Party. I look forward to working with him and I congratulate him as well as all the members of his party on that great convention.

I am delighted that the Premier started the first day by bringing my father-in-law into this. I fully suspected that he would; it was just a question of how long it would take.


Mr. Peterson: Well, the Premier wanted to. He should admit it right now. I thank him only for not bringing my brother into it, even though he did blame the federal government for roughly the first half of the throne speech today.

I hope that is going to be the end of it.

Hon. Mr. Davis: No.

Mr. Peterson: If he feels he wants to communicate with my father-in-law, I will happily provide him with his address. If he wants to communicate with my brother in Ottawa he can send him a letter in care of the House of Commons, no stamp required.

I just want to say, on behalf of my party in a personal way, how very happy we are that the Premier is here today. We read with some concern about his stay in the hospital with an abscessed wisdom tooth. We, like the Premier, are dedicated to the cause of rooting out decay.

Mr. Foulds: I notice, Mr. Speaker, that the Premier obviously has not had his tooth pulled. We accept the congratulations in the spirit in which they were given and we would like to congratulate the Premier on his second decade of leadership of his party.


Mr. Foulds: I must say that is a bad sign or me to receive applause from the Conservative benches, but I also want to extend congratulations to the leader of the Liberal Party. I congratulate him on his success. I know something of his trials and of the vigour with which he conducted that campaign.

I do want to remind the Premier, however, that our convention is over and we do have a leader. The Premier's is yet to come. Mr. Rae will be making life as miserable as possible for the government on the hustings and I will be doing so here in the Legislature. Together, he and I and our colleagues in the Legislature will be trying to bring tough but constructive opposition as vigorously as we can for the people of Ontario.

Hon. Mr. Davis: Mr. Speaker, I have several other thoughts I wish to express, but I --

Mr. Mancini: You had your turn.

Hon. Mr. Davis: I listened very carefully to a lot of speeches by the member for Kitchener-Wilmot (Mr. Sweeney) and I really wanted to expand on many of them here this afternoon. I shall not.

Mr. Speaker, it is a great pleasure to move the adjournment of the House.

The House adjourned at 4:05 p.m.