43e législature, 1e session

L111A - Mon 20 Nov 2023 / Lun 20 nov 2023

 

The House met at 1015.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Good morning. Let us pray.

Prayers.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I want to acknowledge that we are meeting on lands traditionally inhabited by Indigenous peoples. We pay our respects to the many Indigenous nations who have gathered here and continue to gather here, including the Mississaugas of the Credit. Meegwetch.

This morning we have with us in the public gallery the Crestwood Preparatory College school choir, from the riding of Don Valley East, to perform O Canada and God Save the King. Please remain standing and join them in the singing of our national and royal anthems.

Singing of the national anthem / Chant de l’hymne national.

Singing of the royal anthem / Chant de l’hymne royal.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Thank you very much. Members may take their seats.

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Board of Internal Economy

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I beg to inform the House that, in accordance with section 87 of the Legislative Assembly Act, the names of the following persons appointed to serve as alternates on the Board of Internal Economy have been communicated to me as Chair of the Board of Internal Economy:

The Honourable Andrea Khanjin, MPP, is appointed by the Lieutenant Governor in Council from among the members of the executive council; and

Terence Kernaghan, MPP, is appointed by the caucus of the official opposition.

Members’ Statements

Leeds Grenville Economic Development Summit

Mr. Steve Clark: On Friday, I co-sponsored the 15th annual Leeds Grenville Economic Development Summit. Speakers included Leclerc Foods, one of Canada’s leading food manufacturers, who, last year, announced a $100-million expansion of its North American operations in Brockville.

Another presenter was Shorelines Casino Thousand Islands, one of the top tourism and hospitality employers in the region, while generating significant revenue for Gananoque and Leeds and the Thousand Islands as host communities.

Planning our Future Infrastructure update was from Enbridge, since natural gas has a key role in attraction and expansion of business.

Preparing for our Aging Community outlined the Maple View Landings project, one of the riding’s much-needed long-term-care homes.

Building an Appetite for Culinary Tourism showcased four businesses that are leading the way: Maison Maitland Cooking School and Villas, Pickle and Myrrh, Hall’s Apple Market and Rosie Yumski’s Fine Foods.

Our keynote was the Honourable David Piccini, Ontario’s Minister of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development, who spoke about our government’s plan on building a stronger Ontario for all workers.

Finally, the Bill Thake Memorial Economic Development Leadership Award was presented to Joe Hudson of Burnbrae Farms. More than 80 years ago, Joe bought some laying hens for a high school project. This action would eventually transform the dairy farm into one of Canada’s largest egg producers.

Other nominees for this year’s award included Susan Alford, Judi Baril, Shelley Mitchell and Terry Wills.

Anti-discrimination activities

Ms. Peggy Sattler: On November 10, more than 60 London faith leaders, including Imam Twakkal, Rabbi Dressler, and Canon Kevin George, issued a message of unity, urging Londoners to stand together against rising hate crimes targeting both Jewish and Muslim communities. They called for compassion, peace and an end to hatred, asking Londoners to instead acknowledge the pain, loss, and anguish that so many are feeling.

Like many MPPs, I have spoken to members of both Muslim and Jewish communities in London since October 7. Parents are anxious about sending their kids to school. Muslims, especially if they wear the kaffiyeh or the hijab, worry about being attacked. Jews whose Star of David hangs over their doors fear their homes could be vandalized.

Last week’s guilty verdict in the Our London Family trial serves as a stark and heartbreaking reminder of the deadly consequences of violent acts of hate. Canadian chiefs of police are reporting unprecedented levels of Islamophobic, anti-Semitic and anti-Arab hate crimes and incidents since October 7.

As elected officials, I call on each and every member of this House to follow the lead of London’s faith leaders. We must strongly denounce hate and work to heal division and polarization. As we all bear witness to the unbearable carnage and suffering in Gaza, I reiterate NDP calls for a ceasefire and the return of the hostages, so we can work toward a lasting peace in the Middle East.

Info-Tech CIO Awards

Mr. Lorne Coe: I am pleased this morning to report that a Whitby resident’s leadership and dedication has set her apart in the world of technology. Carrie-Ann Williamson, the director of technology and innovation services at the town of Whitby, recently won the Info-Tech Research Group’s 2023 Chief Information Officer Award for Canadian leaders. Speaker, the Info-Tech Chief Information Officer Award recognizes yearly outstanding information-technology leaders for delivering exceptional value to their organizations and whose strategic initiatives and innovative approaches significantly elevated stakeholder satisfaction.

Carrie-Ann Williamson’s accomplishments bring pride not only to herself and family, but to all Whitby residents. Carrie-Ann’s excellence has established a new standard for technology leaders to aspire to not just in our province, but other parts of Canada.

Congratulations, Carrie, for your personal success, but also for elevating Whitby and Ontario’s reputation on the national stage.

Tenant protection

Ms. Doly Begum: I rise today to share a distressing story of one of my constituents, Laura, and her two autistic sons. After nine years in a basement apartment, they were served an N12 notice and suddenly evicted from their home. Laura is the sole provider for their family and faced incredible barriers in finding a new home.

Speaker, the rental market’s exorbitant demands pushed Laura and her sons away from their community. She was asked for extensive financial documentations, advance payments for up to a year and even to provide medical notes detailing her sons’ behaviours due to their autism, just to find a home. Laura’s history of timely payments—contributing substantially over $150,000 to her landlord’s mortgage while living in a basement—didn’t shield her from getting evicted.

Because Laura was unable to secure any affordable option in Toronto, she and her sons moved to Niagara Falls, leaving their community and their safety nets behind.

Speaker, this isn’t just Laura’s story; it’s a glimpse into the broken system. There are thousands of Ontarians, thousands of families struggling to find affordable places to live. So many small landlords are relying on rental income, struggling to keep up with the high rate of mortgages. Vulnerable tenants are facing impossible barriers to finding affordable housing. We are facing an enormous housing crisis across the city and the province.

The government must do better to safeguard tenants from unjust evictions and discriminatory rental practices. All Ontarians, regardless of their circumstances, deserve equitable access to safe and affordable housing.

Visitor

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): We have with us in the House today a former member of the Legislature, the member for Parkdale–High Park in the 38th, 39th, 40th and 41st provincial Parliaments, Cheri DiNovo. Welcome back to Queen’s Park.

Connor Yeomans

Ms. Goldie Ghamari: On April 30, 2023, I was honoured to attend the Manotick Legion’s Youth Education awards ceremony, where I met Connor Yeomans. I presented Connor with an award for a poem he wrote for last year’s Manotick Legion Remembrance Day art and literature contest. His poem is entitled, “Poppy’s Blow in the Winter Snow.” Connor wrote this as a 12-year-old grade 7 student at St. Francis Xavier High School in Riverside South, in my riding of Carleton. I am extremely proud on behalf of the Manotick Legion and all students in the Carleton riding to share Connor’s poem with everyone.

The poem goes as follows:

Lives lost, at a big cost

High risk, high reward,

But for others high risk and nothing to show

For all who had their life on the life

Thank you for showing us how to really shine

For the soldiers who fought for our nation,

We wear a poppy to show our appreciation

When we were in tears

Soldiers had no fears

That is why

Poppy’s blow in the winter snow.

Congratulations, Connor. You make everyone in Carleton very proud.

Trans Day of Remembrance

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’m going to interrupt members’ statements for a moment and ask for the attention of the House. The time being 10:29 a.m., as provided for by the Trans Day of Remembrance Act, 2017, the Assembly will now pause and observe one minute of silence in honour of trans people who have died as a result of anti-trans violence.

I will now ask members to please rise.

The House observed a moment’s silence.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Thank you. Members may please take their seats.

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Ms. Lisa MacLeod: Point of order.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Point of order.

Ms. Lisa MacLeod: I just wanted to recognize again Cheri DiNovo, our former member of provincial Parliament. Trans Day of Remembrance was a piece of legislation that was created by her. I was a proud to be a co-sponsor of that bill, along with a former Ottawa–Vanier MPP, Nathalie Des Rosiers. It’s wonderful to see you here today. I know that you’re a champion, and I know sometimes we don’t agree, but it’s always wonderful to see you, my friend.

Grey Cup

Ms. Sandy Shaw: The 110th Grey Cup championship took over Hamilton last week, and it was a wild week indeed. Visitors came to our city from all across Canada, and they left knowing for sure that Hamilton knows how to throw a party.

The Grey Cup arrived in style with a naval escort aboard the HMCS Harry DeWolf, with an official arrival ceremony at the HMCS Star naval reserve. Our Grey Cup celebrations included a holiday for students; a free breakfast for fans; beer gardens, many official and unofficial; food trucks; a Christmas market; and live music up and down James Street North.

Saturday morning, I had the thrill of walking in the Santa Claus parade with MPP Monique Taylor. The streets were lined with tens of thousands of folks in the holiday spirit. Many, many CFL jerseys were on display, but of course, there was a sea of Ticat black and gold. To the absolute delight of hometown fans, Cats linebacker Simoni Lawrence joined Mrs. Claus in the parade.

Then there was the sellout game between the Montreal Alouettes and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. And what a fantastic game: The Bombers led after the half, but Montreal took the lead with only 11 seconds on the clock. I learned last night that 12 out of 16 of the last Grey Cup games have been decided in the last three minutes, proving without a doubt that there’s no football on the planet more exciting than Canadian football.

Hamiltonians may be disappointed that the Cats weren’t in it this year, but next year, in BC, the Cats will be there. Oskee Wee Wee!

Gurpurab

Mr. Hardeep Singh Grewal: Next week, on November 27, Sikhs across the world will be celebrating Gurpurab, the birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev Ji, the founder of Sikhism and the first of the 10 Sikh gurus. Guru Nanak Dev Ji fought against discrimination and prejudice and preached a message of equality for all, regardless of religion, background or gender. Gurpurab holds a profound significance for millions of Sikhs across the world, making it not just a religious celebration but a time of reflection on unity and service to humanity.

Guru Nanak Dev Ji’s teachings of compassion, equality and selfless service continue to aspire us and guide us. They continue to remind us that diversity is our strength, and that we all have a role to play to make our world a more just and inclusive place.

Speaker, the five key principles of his teachings are vand chakkō—share whatever God has given to you with others and help those who are in need; kirat karō, meaning making an honest living; naam japo—chant the name of the true God; sarbat da bhalla—ask for everyone’s happiness; and speak the truth without fear.

Celebrating Gurpurab, gurdwaras and homes around the world will be decorated with flowers and lights to commemorate this auspicious day. From my family to yours, I wish you all a joyous Gurpurab filled with love, peace and prosperity. May the spirit of Guru Nanak Dev Ji continue to guide us on the path of righteousness and compassion.

Happy Gurpurab to everyone celebrating.

Affordable housing

Mr. Mike Schreiner: The worsening housing crisis is the number one issue that constituents bring to my office. It’s also the primary concern I hear knocking on doors in Kitchener—young people wondering if they will ever be able to own a home, while struggling to pay the rent; minimum wage workers with two full-time jobs just to pay the rent; people on ODSP living in legislated poverty, finding it impossible to find an affordable home; others sleeping in tents as the temperatures drop below 0.

Speaker, I’m calling on the government to stop prioritizing speculators and start building homes ordinary people can afford in the communities they know and love—by passing my bills to legalize building gentle density and missing-middle housing; to work with us to provide operating funds for permanent supportive housing projects, like the 32 homes for the Kindle project that’s ready to open in Guelph soon.

Instead of spending $3 billion for a bank, use that money to support non-profits and co-ops to build deeply affordable homes. Bring in real rent control. Drive speculation out of the housing market. And permanently reduce home heating costs by funding a building retrofit program to help people save money by saving energy.

Greens have solutions to the housing crisis, and we’re asking you to work with us to get it done.

Chambers of commerce awards of excellence

Mr. Ernie Hardeman: Over the past few weeks, the Ingersoll, Tillsonburg and Woodstock chambers of commerce handed out their annual awards of excellence. These are given to local businesses and entrepreneurs who have made a positive impact in our community. I would like to congratulate each of the winners here today.

From the Ingersoll chamber: Ingersoll Music Academy; JTK Meat Shoppe; Emily Bula for the Youth Citizen of the Year Award; Denise Vyse for the Mark Warnick Citizen of the Year Award; and Ted Comiskey for the President’s Award.

From the Tillsonburg chamber: J.D. Lighting; 3E Power Services Ltd.; Solid Edge Wood Products; Grassmere Construction Ltd.; Armtec Inc.; Roselyn D’Ascania for the Community Service Award; Dave Martin and Shawn Winters for the Entrepreneur of the Year Award; and Brad Martin for the Esseltine Positive Change Award.

From the Woodstock chamber: Deep Purple Lavender Farm; Blue Cow Delivery; Big Brothers Big Sisters of Oxford County; Maglin Site Furniture; Brickhouse Brewpub; Fore! Oxford; Cassandra Benard OC Realty Team; and Dance In Style Studio Inc.

To all the winners and nominees: Thank you for making Oxford a great place to live and grow. I wish you all the best for the years ahead.

Professional and cultural events

Ms. Jess Dixon: The past several days were a whirlwind of galas, to the point that I somewhat lost my voice as of yesterday. On Thursday, I attended the Toronto Police Chief’s Gala. And on Friday, the Peel South Asian Collective Internal Support Network Gala—thank you to my great friend Minister Nina Tangri for inviting me. I have a lot of interest in what Peel is doing with community policing, so it was wonderful to attend. I was able to bring my good friend Officer Farhan Ali of the Toronto Police Service, who’s a champion for the Muslim community. On Saturday, I attended the Gujarati Cultural Association Diwali dinner.

I also want to extend a personal thank you to a small business owner in Cambridge, Nav, who owns Ritzi Collections. Attire for the South Asian gala was South Asian attire, and I had nothing to wear, because, of course, it requires an auntie or quantum physics to get a sari on. So at the time that the event had actually already started in Brampton, I flew into her store in Cambridge with a laundry basket full of saris and said, “Will you please put something on me?” In 45 minutes, Nav, Manjeet, Harpreet, Navdeep and Jasmeet had, in a scene reminiscent of Cinderella, whirled around me, custom-made and altered a blouse, pinned me into my sari, got me all accessorized and sent me out the door. Thank you so much for their generosity.

Introduction of Visitors

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’ve been advised by the Minister of Public and Business Service Delivery that we have a special guest in the members’ gallery I’d like to introduce. The granddaughter of the late Honourable Lincoln Alexander, Erika Alexander, is present with us. Welcome to the Legislature.

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Mr. John Vanthof: It’s Ontario Pork’s lobby day, and there are a few of the directors in the members’ gallery. I’d like, on their behalf, to invite you to their lunch in 228 and 230 this afternoon.

Mr. Billy Pang: It is my great honour to welcome the remarkable Dragon Boat Team Canada. This summer, they achieved victory in an international race in Pattaya, Thailand. After question period, a photo op with some of the team’s exceptional athletes will take place at the grand staircase. Members are welcome to join.

MPP Kristyn Wong-Tam: On the Trans Day of Remembrance, there’s a flag raising at 12 o’clock, and there are a number of esteemed guests in the gallery today who are here: Rev. Cheri DiNovo—of course, the former member of provincial Parliament—and she is joined by Rev. Junia Joplin from the Metropolitan Community Church. We also have members from the community at large: Stephanie Woolley, Monika Gontarska, Arson Gontarska, Tomasz Kosut, Aleksander Kosut, Anastazja Kosut, and Keith McCrady.

Welcome to your House.

Hon. Todd J. McCarthy: It gives me great pleasure this morning to introduce, in the gallery, Judy Hanson from Bowmanville, in my riding of Durham. She is a champion and advocate for adults with autism, and she is the representative today of Autism Home Base.

Welcome to the House.

Ms. Catherine Fife: The Insurance Brokers Association of Ontario is here today. They also have a reception later on this evening. I’d like to welcome, from my riding of Waterloo, Shara Bierman. She’s the central west director, and she represents Waterloo.

Welcome to your House.

Mr. Ernie Hardeman: I’d like to welcome to the Legislative Assembly Deputy Mayor Dave Beres and Cephas Panschow from the town of Tillsonburg.

Ms. Bhutila Karpoche: I’d like to give a very warm welcome to my friend and former colleague Margo Duncan, who was here in this building at Queen’s Park working with three different MPPs, and is a community activist in the Lambton area and with Heritage York. Welcome.

Hon. Nina Tangri: It really is my privilege to introduce members from Takeda’s patient value and access team who are visiting Queen’s Park today. Takeda is a 240-year-old global R&D-driven biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Japan.

Thank you for the important work that you are doing in the life sciences space. Welcome to Queen’s Park.

Mr. Terence Kernaghan: It’s my honour to welcome the Economic Developers Council of Ontario. I encourage all members to attend their reception in the dining room this evening, from 4:45 until 7.

Welcome to Queen’s Park.

Hon. David Piccini: It’s my great pleasure to welcome friends from the Unite Here workers’ union: Guled Warsame, Alejandra Muro, and Derrick Ahn, who are all here visiting Queen’s Park today. Welcome to Queen’s Park.

Hon. Rob Flack: It’s my pleasure to introduce the former member of Parliament and current mayor of St. Thomas—and, as the Premier likes to call him, “Mr. Yes”: Joe Preston.

Question Period

Government accountability

Ms. Marit Stiles: My question is to the Premier.

Speaker, this side of the House has spent months trying to get to the bottom of just how widespread the alleged corruption which the RCMP is investigating goes. Public accounts revealed that the Premier’s former principal secretary, Amin Massoudi, after leaving the Premier’s office, was paid nearly a quarter of a million dollars to do the same job, only this time through his private company, Atlas. Yet this government has refused to answer questions on just exactly when that contract started.

My question is to the Premier. When did the contract with Atlas Strategic Advisors start with the Conservative caucus?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): To respond, the government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: I appreciate the question.

As the Leader of the Opposition highlighted, this is something that was in the public accounts of the province. It is not a secret or something that was hidden—just the opposite.

At the same time, we are continuing to focus on those things that matter to the people of the province of Ontario; that is creating jobs, building more homes. We are seeing really extraordinary results across the province of Ontario. Some 700,000 people have the dignity of a job who didn’t have that when we came to office. We’re going to continue on that path of building more jobs and a bigger, better, stronger province of Ontario for the people of the province.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Supplementary question.

Ms. Marit Stiles: Well, let me help the Premier out here again. We understand that Mr. Massoudi is no longer employed with the Conservative caucus. Shortly after the news broke of the Vegas boys’ trip, this government quietly ended the contract. What they won’t answer to this House is when the contract started.

The Premier’s office told the Toronto Star that this government paid Mr. Massoudi’s firm at least $237,300 from about July 1, 2022, through to March 31 of this year.

Back to the Premier: Can he confirm that the contract with Atlas Strategic Advisors started in July 2022?

Hon. Paul Calandra: Speaker, Mr. Massoudi had a contract with PCCS, as do a number of others who provide services for PCCS and all of the recognized caucuses here—including the Leader of the Opposition.

At the same time, we’re going to continue to do what is important, focusing on creating jobs in the province of Ontario, building a strong economy, and really doubling down on ensuring that we can build more homes across Ontario.

I’m very glad to see today that the mayor of St. Thomas is here. That is a mayor who has undertaken extraordinary work to remove obstacles so that we could bring a massive amount of jobs to his community, so that we could build homes, economic growth. That is the type of leadership that we need across the province of Ontario from our municipal partners. I’m really happy that His Worship is here. We will continue to work with Mayor Preston so that can ensure that not only St. Thomas but all parts of Ontario can experience the exact same growth that they’re going to have in St. Thomas. Thousands of jobs, economic growth—it’s good for the people of the province of Ontario.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Final supplementary.

Ms. Marit Stiles: Speaker, I can understand why this Premier would want to avoid the question. New documents that the NDP official opposition have obtained show that Mr. Massoudi left his role as principal secretary on August 27, 2022, months after this government told the Toronto Star they were paying his private company to provide the exact same services.

Did the Premier’s friend double-bill the taxpayers for speech-writing services because he was, indeed, a close friend of the Premier?

Hon. Paul Calandra: No, Mr. Speaker.

Government fiscal policies

Ms. Marit Stiles: I guess that’s interesting—and that’s not going to cut it, by the way. These are important questions, and the people of this province deserve answers from this government.

This question is also for the Premier.

While our public services, like health care and schools, are crumbling across this province and housing is getting more and more out of reach, somehow this government brags about spending more than ever.

To the Premier: People who are stuck in longer and longer waits in the emergency room or being treated in hospital hallways want to know, where is the money going?

Hon. Doug Ford: Well, I’ll tell the Leader of the Opposition where the money is going. Since we’ve been in office, we’ve registered over 63,000 nurses. Last year was a record—over 15,000 nurses, and there are 30,000 in the hopper. But they voted against that legislation. They voted against building a new medical university up in Peel.

As a matter of fact, our backlog of surgeries has dropped by 25,000 patients—but they vote against that as well. They vote against building 50 new or additions to hospitals across the province, to a tune of $50 billion. They voted against that as well. They don’t believe in fixing the health care system. What they believe in is the status quo. Under the previous two governments, the Liberals and propped up by the NDP—not spending. As a matter of fact, they fired nurses when they were working together.

We’re hiring thousands and thousands of nurses. That’s what we’re doing with the health care dollars.

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Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The member for Waterloo will come to order. The member for Brantford–Brant will come to order.

Supplementary question?

Ms. Marit Stiles: Speaker, I’ll help the Premier. Do you know where the money is going? It’s going directly out of the public coffers and into their friends’ private pockets. That’s where it’s going.

This is a government that continues to spend more for less. New data shows that the private surgical clinics this government was so keen on expanding are charging OHIP 138% more for the same surgery. It’s also making wait times longer, all while public operating rooms sit with the lights off.

Back to the Premier: When will this government admit that their private, for-profit surgery scheme is increasing the cost to taxpayers and worsening wait times?

Hon. Doug Ford: You know something, Mr. Speaker? You talk to anyone who’s waiting a year or two years for hip replacement, a knee replacement or cataracts—they did 14,000 cataract surgeries, taking the burden off hospitals, and guess what? It was all paid by the OHIP card, not by their credit card.

We’re continuing building on 19 common ailments, resulting in 530,000 assessments fewer every single year, taking the burden off the family docs, taking the burden off people going in and waiting in a doctor’s office for over an hour to get an appointment. Now they can go to the local pharmacy—making sure they have convenient care closer to home. That’s what we’re doing with the health care system.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The final supplementary.

Ms. Marit Stiles: At four times the cost of what they could be paying in the public health care system.

Public operating rooms sitting empty, emergency rooms closing, affordable housing wait-lists decades-long, more people with full-time jobs going to food banks than ever before—all while this government has been so preoccupied with their shady, backroom deals, spending more for less in health care, $650 million on a private luxury spa, hoarding billions in their rainy day fund; all while Ontarians are struggling.

Back to the Premier: Five years in, people are worse off now than before. The rainy day is here. When will this government finally invest to make life easier for Ontarians?

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’m going to caution the Leader of the Opposition on her choice of words.

The Premier can respond.

Hon. Doug Ford: Well, Mr. Speaker, I find it so ironic. We walked in—I describe it as a bankrupt company. Every single ministry was an absolute disaster. The health care system was in full collapse until we came on board.

And what are we doing for the people of Ontario? We’re putting more money into people’s pockets. Under their reign, there were 300,000 jobs lost in this province. There are over 700,000 more people taking home a paycheque, being able to pay rent or pay a mortgage. We got rid of the tolls on the 412 and the 418. We eliminated that sticker tax. We reduced the gas tax by 10 cents a litre. But guess what? They voted against every single item that we did.

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Order.

Hon. Doug Ford: They don’t believe in saving taxpayers money. They believe in gouging the taxpayers for every penny they have. All three of these parties believe in tax, tax, tax.

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Order.

The next question.

Post-secondary education funding

Ms. Peggy Sattler: My question is to the Premier.

The crisis in our post-secondary system provides yet another example of a public service that is crumbling under this government’s erratic and irresponsible fiscal approach. Last week’s blue-ribbon panel found that Ontario’s funding for post-secondary education is just half that of the rest of Canada. Eight Ontario universities have run deficits for two years in a row.

Speaker, what is the Premier’s plan to address the fragile and financially unsustainable situation of Ontario’s colleges and universities?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The Minister of Colleges and Universities.

Hon. Jill Dunlop: Thank you to the member for that question.

The opposition can ask questions until they’re blue in the face, but my answer is still the same. We are reviewing the panel’s recommendations, and we will look forward to working with this sector and to develop a plan that works for the long-term sustainability and success for Ontario’s colleges and universities. But I want to remind everyone that the NDPs, under the Liberal government, let tuition skyrocket in this province. But now that our government is taking a practical approach, putting students first and taking the time to review the recommendations, they don’t want to be a part of our solution.

Like always, they will oppose the measures that we take to support students. They’ll vote against the solutions that we bring forward and focus on playing politics. We are here to support students and to ensure financial sustainability of the post-secondary institutions for years to come.

Ms. Peggy Sattler: This government has slashed funding for post-secondary education both on a per-student basis and operating funding. More and more institutions are being forced to turn to partnerships with private, for-profit colleges to keep the doors open, which raises questions if this was the government’s plan all along.

Will the Premier commit today to ensuring that colleges and universities in Ontario will get the increased funding that they, and more importantly, students need to keep the sector afloat?

Interjections.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Members will please take their seats.

And to reply, the Minister of Colleges and Universities.

Hon. Jill Dunlop: I cannot overemphasize the importance of ensuring that colleges and universities operate transparently and are accountable to students and the taxpayers about how their money is spent. My ministry has already begun working with institutions on a financial accountability framework that will allow for early detection of financial challenges and require immediate action to correct bad practices in order for our post-secondary to be sustainable for the long term.

Institutions need to take leadership and review their operations from top to bottom. From governance practices, program offerings, day-to-day operations and everything between, colleges and universities across this province need to become the best possible version of themselves. This is not a change that will happen overnight but it is one that is necessary so that students, families and taxpayers can have confidence that every dollar being spent is allocated appropriately and with complete transparency.

Taxation

Mr. Will Bouma: My question is for the Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade.

Just last week, a Liberal member in this House said that the federal carbon tax was making life better for the people of Ontario. That could not be further from the truth. I want to encourage that member to stop parroting talking points from the Prime Minister’s office and Ontario Liberal leadership candidates and start talking to her constituents and businesses who are struggling because of this terrible tax.

Our government understands that businesses have had a lot to deal with over the last few years, which is why we have been so steadfast in our commitment to lowering cost, and persistent in our opposition to the federal government’s carbon tax.

Can the minister please highlight what our government has done to lower costs for businesses across the province of Ontario?

Hon. Victor Fedeli: While the Liberal government has been busy raising taxes and raising the burden on businesses, we’ve been busy—Premier Ford’s government—cutting red tape. In fact, we’ve cut over 500 pieces of red tape that save over $900 million of burden on businesses each and every year. We have lowered the workers’ compensation by 50% without touching the workers’ benefits. This is a savings of $2.5 billion each and every year. We allow companies now to write off their new equipment in year. It saves them $1 billion a year. This has all put a package together of saving $8 billion a year—put 700,000 people to work. While they’re busy with the carbon tax that penalizes business, we are continuing to lower costs and putting people to work.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The supplementary question.

Mr. Will Bouma: Thank you, Minister, for that response.

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Our government understands the challenges that businesses are facing with high inflation and high interest rates. That’s why we have taken concrete actions to lower costs, as the minister outlined.

At the same time, we recognize the importance of tackling climate change, but you don’t address climate change by penalizing businesses and the hard-working people of this province with a carbon tax.

Can the minister please outline how, unlike the federal government, we have been able to lower costs for our businesses while treating climate change seriously?

Hon. Victor Fedeli: Mr. Speaker, we have lowered the cost of business by $8 billion a year. That has attracted $27 billion of electric vehicle investments, 120,000 men and women working in that sector and that is going to produce, here in Ontario. We saw General Motors have the first electric vehicles in Canadian history come off their assembly line.

In Ingersoll, we’re producing clean and emission-free vehicles here in Ontario. These are built with Ontario workers right here in our province. Our batteries will be a 100% clean energy. You get a battery in Kentucky made with 6% clean energy or go to Indiana and get a battery with 7% clean energy.

Here in Ontario, we’re making green steel, which will produce zero-emission vehicles. That’s what we’re doing in the province of Ontario.

Land use planning

Ms. Sandy Shaw: This government is planning to allow only one hour of committee hearings to discuss Bill 136, Greenbelt Statute Law Amendment Act and the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing intends to use up that entire hour.

Ontarians are rightfully outraged by this government’s actions on the greenbelt, so why are you blocking the public from being heard?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: I don’t know, Speaker; I think I’m a pretty entertaining guy when I get up there. I think I add value to the hearings. I think that the members opposite would want to hear from cabinet ministers. In fact, it was this government that made it mandatory for cabinet ministers to actually appear before committees to defend their bills. I want to thank the Premier for insisting that we do that.

When it comes to the Greenbelt Statute Law Amendment Act, we’ve made it clear. We made a public policy decision that wasn’t supported by the people of the province of Ontario. The opposition, I assume, was going to vote in favour of that repeal. At the same time, it is still on the Environmental Registry for a 30-day consultation from people, from Indigenous communities. There is ample opportunity for the public to participate and to have their say. That will all be framed as part of the committee hearings before this House votes on third reading.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Supplementary question?

Ms. Sandy Shaw: Do you know what? In Ontario, we’ve heard enough from cabinet ministers. We need to hear from the public. That’s what we need in this province.

The second biggest parcel of land removed from the greenbelt was located in Hamilton. The Integrity Commissioner reported details about how favoured greenbelt developers in Hamilton received preferential treatment from this government. The Premier repeatedly called one of these speculators, and the PC Party fundraising chair sold this speculator tickets to the Premier’s daughter’s stag and doe.

Why is the government blocking the public from participating in the Bill 136 hearings? Is it possibly to avoid accountability for preferential treatment of the Premier’s special greenbelt friends?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Premier.

Hon. Doug Ford: To answer the opposition’s question, she said, “We need to hear from the public.” Do you know why you aren’t hearing from the public? They don’t give two hoots about that.

I’ll tell you what they care about. They care about their interest rates going up. They care about affordable homes—that they block every single vote we have that makes things easier—and more affordable homes. They worry about the next year or two when their interest rates get jacked up, and all of a sudden, they’re paying $3,000, $4,000 or $5,000 more a month. That’s what they care about. The number one issue on every poll—independent, other polls—is number one, bar none, is making sure their gas is affordable, hoping that the federal government will take the 14 cents of the carbon tax off a litre of gas. They care about having affordable groceries. They care about having affordable homes.

Second, in any poll, it’s the economy, making sure that they have a stable job to ensure that they have an income to buy that house, to pay—

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Thank you. The Premier will take his seat.

The next question.

Taxation

Ms. Goldie Ghamari: Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Finance. Just last week, the Liberal member for Kanata–Carleton said that the vast majority of Ontario households are better off with a carbon price. However, a report by the Parliamentary Budget Officer, or PBO, provides further evidence that calls her statements into question. The PBO concludes that most households will experience a net loss of income from the disastrous federal carbon tax when accounting for both direct and indirect costs. Specifically, the PBO report finds that 60% of households in Alberta, Ontario, Saskatchewan and Manitoba will pay more in carbon taxes than they receive in rebates.

Speaker, through you: Can the Minister of Finance please provide his views regarding the impact of the disastrous carbon tax on Ontario families?

Hon. Peter Bethlenfalvy: Thank you to the great member from Carleton.

Mr. Speaker, I want to be crystal clear to the people of Ontario, to the federal government, and especially to the Liberal member from Kanata–Carleton: The federal carbon tax is making life tougher and making all areas of life more expensive for the people of Ontario and their families. It makes the commute to the grocery store pricier—

Mr. John Fraser: It’s not going to help them with their groceries.

Hon. Peter Bethlenfalvy: —and, once there, it makes the price of food more expensive, even for the member of the leader of the independent party over there.

Mr. Speaker, this isn’t a tax that just affects some Ontarians; this is driving up costs for every person in the province—and across the country. That is why we will not stop putting pressure on the Liberal government to do the right thing—and perhaps the provincial party will join—and eliminate this regressive carbon tax.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The supplementary question.

Ms. Goldie Ghamari: Thank you to the minister for his response. The Parliamentary Budget Officer further states that by 2030, 80% of Ontario households will actually be worse off, not better, because of the carbon tax.

It’s concerning that while you were answering your question, I was hearing the Liberal members in the back corner disagreeing with you and saying that people are still going to be better off with the carbon tax.

Overall, on average, Ontarians will pay $478 more per household because of the federal carbon tax, and in the year 2030, the average financial loss for Ontarians will be close to $2,000 per household. Increasing the carbon tax will only negatively impact Ontario families and our economy, not improve it, despite what the Liberals might think.

The carbon tax adversely affects our businesses and negatively impacts our economy and Ontario workers.

Speaker, through you: Can the minister please set the record straight about how the carbon tax hurts all sectors of Ontario’s economy?

Hon. Peter Bethlenfalvy: Thank you again to the hard-working member from Carleton.

The Liberal member from Kanata–Carleton might think that more taxes and higher prices are good for the people of Ontario, but this government is taking action to put money back into the pockets of many Ontarians. While we wait for the federal government to end the carbon tax, our new measures are giving relief to families right across the province. That’s why, only a few weeks ago, we extended the gas tax cut to June 2024, ensuring that drivers continue to have the relief they need at the pumps. We ended the licence plate stickers, making it more affordable to drive your car—reducing electricity bills; cutting tolls on the 412 and the 418.

This government will continue to lead the way, making life more affordable for the people of Ontario, and perhaps the members opposite would join us in doing just the same.

LGBTQIA+ discrimination

MPP Kristyn Wong-Tam: In September, the Premier claimed that teachers and school boards were indoctrinating children about gender identity. Words matter, especially those spoken by the Premier.

Today is the Trans Day of Remembrance, and this House held a moment of silence to remember those who died or were killed because of transphobic hatred and violence.

Since the Premier made that damaging claim, incidents of hate directed at trans and queer people, and especially students, have been rising dramatically.

My question is, does the Premier regret his claim, when he knows that the only curriculum being taught in Ontario is the one posted on the Ministry of Education’s own website?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): To reply, I recognize the Minister of Citizenship and Multiculturalism.

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Hon. Michael D. Ford: I would like to thank the member for that important question.

Mr. Speaker, there is no question that Ontario is home to a strong and vibrant 2SLGBTQIA+ community that calls Ontario home. We recognize the unique challenges and barriers faced by many within the community. That is why we are making critical investments to build safer and more secure communities in all aspects. This includes over $60 million in anti-hate initiatives just from my ministry alone, including a $25.5-million investment in the Anti-Hate Security and Prevention Grant.

Mr. Speaker, as we observe the Transgender Day of Remembrance, we remember the historical and ongoing challenges faced by the community and commit to building a stronger, more inclusive province where all Ontarians can safely and freely express their identity, practise their faith and observe their traditions.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The supplementary question.

MPP Kristyn Wong-Tam: Speaker, empty words that don’t actually keep trans communities safe. Hate crimes are on the rise in Ontario and in Toronto; we have seen this tripled in the 2SLGBT community. In fact, according to Toronto police, queer and trans people are the ones most frequently victimized by physical assault.

In April, I introduced an NDP bill to address this violence by creating the first-ever Ontario-wide strategy to address 2SLGBTQI safety. Every day that goes by without a provincial plan to stop transphobic violence, the community grows more afraid and is losing hope.

Can the Premier—can anyone in government—assure trans and queer families like mine that they will keep us safe? How will he commit to working with us to pass this legislation as soon as possible?

Hon. Michael D. Ford: Mr. Speaker, as I have said from day one, my door is always open. It will continue to stay open to all members of any community. During my time as minister, I have had ongoing discussions with many members of Ontario’s 2SLGBTQIA+ community and organizations, including Pride Toronto and The 519, who is just down the street, to learn more about the work they do and how best we can support them. These conversations have inspired the $4.8-million investment to 82 community-led projects and increased public education, awareness and understanding of the impacts of racism and hate, just to name another initiative alone.

Lastly, I want to say, in light of today being Transgender Day of Remembrance, to anyone who has experienced discrimination or harassment or is struggling; Please know that you are valued and that you are not alone. We are here for you, and our government will continue building a stronger and more inclusive Ontario where all people feel safe and accepted.

Public transit

MPP Andrea Hazell: Mr. Speaker, my question is to the Minister of Transportation.

This government loves to talk about investing in transit, but under their watch, transit agencies are more underfunded than ever. What good is a new subway line if the other subway lines and bus routes are getting cut because the TTC is starved for funding and this government wouldn’t pay up? Our economy relies on public transit getting our workers to work on time. Transit agencies are cutting routes while increasing fares. Reduced service is a major obstacle to bringing people back on the TTC, where we are only at 78% of pre-pandemic usage. The TTC does not have the money to restore service, and we need the province to step up. The provincial subsidy for transit agencies is not tied to inflation.

Will the minister commit to funding the transit service that Ontarians rely on, or will they continue treating bus riders as an afterthought?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: That’s a very, very interesting question coming from a Liberal member from Scarborough. The member will, of course, remember that the previous Liberal government absolutely did nothing when it came to supporting transit and transportation in Scarborough.

Not only are we building a subway in Scarborough, the Ontario Line, but we’re also doing more on GO services, not only into that area but across the GTA. In my own riding, two-way, all-day GO trains, something we could have only dreamed of before, are now a reality in many parts of the province.

We’re putting historic levels of funding to support our transit and transportation, including our public transportation system. There is no government that has put more money into public transportation than this government and we continue on that because we understand how important it is to building a bigger, better, stronger province of Ontario. We’ll continue to do the work that the Liberals refused to do when they had that opportunity.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The supplementary question.

MPP Andrea Hazell: Under this government’s watch, an LRT derailed in Scarborough, and we have seen no accountability from the Conservatives, no apology, no commitment to fund the replacement busway that is urgently needed.

Having witnessed one LRT line derail because of poor maintenance, I would hope that this government would see it as a warning that they need to invest in the system. Instead, the TTC has to cancel buying new trains for Line 2 because of their provincially supported funding crisis. The trains on Line 2 are not built to last past 2026, and thousands of commuters and I are worried that a serious accident might occur once again. We need to buy new trains, and this government needs to step up because the TTC cannot afford it alone.

Will the minister commit to helping Toronto replace the trains, or is he content to watch another subway derail under his government’s watch?

Hon. Paul Calandra: As you know, the Liberals voted against the $70-billion increase in funding for transit. They voted against that. We’ve provided historic levels of funding under the Safe Restart program.

The member is right on one thing: It is time to make investments. But you know when it was time to start making investments? Ten, 12 years ago, when the people of Scarborough, when the people of Toronto were desperate for more subways and the Liberals did absolutely nothing. Now, as in every single thing that this government has to do, it is about catching up, because after 15 years of disastrous Liberal and NDP-supported rule we are faced with crises, whether it’s in transit and transportation or our health care system, so we’ve had to build hospitals, renew our hospitals and build long-term care, build more roads and improve our transit system. We’re building subways.

And do you know why we have to do all of that? Because under 15 years of Liberals, they did absolutely nothing. They spent, but we have no idea what they spent on. They have nothing to show for it other than high taxes, high regulations and being one of the most indebted sub-sovereign governments in the world. We’re getting it done and we’ll continue to get it done for all of the people of Toronto and Ontario.

Taxation

Mr. Ric Bresee: My question is for the Minister of Indigenous Affairs and Northern Development.

We’ve heard in this House and we’ve certainly heard from our constituents that the carbon tax is making everything more expensive for all Ontarians. The people of northern Ontario and the northern Indigenous communities are even more impacted by the high cost of goods and travel because of this regressive tax. That’s why it’s so shocking to hear the Liberal and NDP opposition members continuing to defend the tax. The reality is that the cost of transporting goods is already much higher in northern Ontario, and these costs are being passed on to the consumers.

Will the minister please elaborate on his views regarding the carbon tax’s negative impact on northern Ontario and northern Indigenous communities?

Hon. Greg Rickford: My good friend the member for Kiiwetinoong over there often discusses the price differences between groceries and other commodities between more populated communities in the north—Sioux Lookout to Sandy Lake First Nation was an example he gave. He noted that the price of chicken is sometimes six times higher in Sandy Lake First Nation than it is in Sioux Lookout. I would argue it’s already more expensive in Sioux Lookout than it is in other big towns and cities.

The Auditor General chimed in on this in 2022 and said Indigenous groups are “disproportionately burdened” by carbon pricing. This is before you factor in the harsh impacts of inflation disproportionately felt in remote communities and only being made worse by the carbon tax.

I know he was in Sachigo Lake this weekend, I think it was. I wondered if he noticed that gas was well above $2 a litre and bread was more than $4 a loaf. Is he going to stand with us to vote to scrap this tax?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Supplementary question?

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Mr. Ric Bresee: Thank you to the minister for those examples of this outrageousness. The carbon tax is, in essence, a tax on everything: your groceries, your gas, your home heating fuel, and so much more. It’s outrageous that the federal government is imposing this regressive tax that negatively impacts individuals and families, especially those in northern communities.

Instead of supporting northern Ontario, the previous Liberal government, supported by the NDP, spent more time insulting the region, calling it a “no man’s land.” Unlike other parts of our province, the north faces unique barriers regarding fuel costs that need to be understood and respected. Individuals downplaying the carbon tax’s impact on northern Ontario is ultimately disrespectful to all of its residents.

Will the minister please elaborate on the detrimental impacts of the carbon tax on the people, the communities and the businesses across the north?

Hon. Greg Rickford: All day long—take the member from Orléans, who talks about how if everyone just got a heat pump and used electricity to power their homes, why, they’d be better off. Is the member from Orléans not aware that dozens of remote and isolated communities rely on diesel fuel, and that heat pumps in places like Kenora don’t actually work when temperatures move beyond minus 20—something that’s going to be happening very quickly?

We’re hard at work to make sure that our northern, remote and isolated communities have affordable, clean energy, but it turns out that old saint Justin gave us a lump of coal during this holiday season. It was only the folks from Atlantic Canada who got relief from that carbon tax.

We moved off coal under the leadership of Premier Harris and other successive governments.

We don’t need coal. We need to scrap the carbon tax.

Health care funding

Mr. Wayne Gates: My question is to the Premier.

Last week, we learned the Conservative government is paying private, for-profit clinics two to four times more than they pay public hospitals for OHIP-covered surgeries.

Also, the former Minister of Health is now lobbying for Clearpoint Health, the biggest chain of private surgical clinics in the country. This comes as a recent report noted that expanding private surgery will not reduce wait times; in fact, it will increase wait times for patients, while worsening our staffing crisis in the province of Ontario.

Why is the Premier choosing to put profits for private clinics before care for patients in the province of Ontario?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): To respond, the member for Eglinton–Lawrence and parliamentary assistant to the Minister of Health.

Mrs. Robin Martin: Thank you to the member opposite for the question.

I haven’t seen the study that you referred to—I’ll look at it—but I don’t understand how completing 14,000 extra cataract surgeries in the last year will not reduce wait times. It seems to me that that reduced wait times for, actually, 14,000 people who had those cataract surgeries, who can now read to their grandchildren, who can now drive to the store, who can now get about their daily lives. And thank goodness we did that, because people need to get back to their lives.

That is what this government is doing—making sure we have the right care, in the right place, at the right time, paid for with your OHIP card.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Supplementary question?

Mr. Wayne Gates: Well, it’s unfortunate that you hadn’t seen the report. It came out five days ago; I gave you plenty of time to read it.

Back to the Premier: This isn’t the first time a Conservative government in Ontario privatized public care; the Mike Harris Conservatives did it with long-term care. They closed 26 hospitals and laid off 6,000 nurses.

Six thousand people died in long-term care during the pandemic—78% were in private, for-profit clinics. The military was called in for some of those homes. Some residents were dying of dehydration. The Premier then gifted those homes with legal protection so families couldn’t sue them for neglect, and he gave some homes multi-decades-long licence renewals. It’s absolutely shameful.

Why won’t the Premier acknowledge the mistakes of the previous Conservative government, repeal Bill 60, and invest in our publicly funded, publicly delivered, not-for-profit health care instead of the profits of private shareholders and CEOs?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Minister.

Hon. Stan Cho: There’s a lot to unpack in that question from the member opposite.

He wants to talk about long-term care. Well, let’s talk about the legacy of what the last government, supported by the NDP, had done to the last system—failing to build long-term care. They knew we had an aging population. We had a lot of immigrants coming to this province, with seniors. That puts additional pressures on a system that they created—in 15 years building a net new 611 beds; a system in which they let the wait-list grow to 40,000 people; a system in which the average wait time for seniors was 152 days.

It is under the leadership of this Premier and this former long-term care minister, who said that we’re not going to go down that road—the road that they created, where you don’t support our seniors—because we think we need to take care of our seniors. That’s why we’re building—$10 billion, a record investment into building 58,000 new and redeveloped homes. That’s why we are taking care of our seniors with better diagnostic tools, better outcomes, focusing on their health and well-being.

Speaker, we won’t take lessons from this NDP—

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Thank you. The next question.

Taxation

Mr. Anthony Leardi: My question is for the Minister of Transportation.

So far, the federal Liberal government has increased the carbon tax on gasoline five times, and they plan on doing it seven more times over the next seven years. The carbon tax is making life more expensive for everybody, especially the trucking industry, who we rely on to transport our goods.

That’s why it was shocking to hear last week when the member from Kanata–Carleton actually stood up and defended the carbon tax. That Liberal member might think the carbon tax is a good thing, but our government knows that it’s a regressive tax and it only makes life more expensive for millions of people in Ontario.

Can the minister please explain the impact of the federal Liberal carbon tax on the trucking industry?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): To respond, the member for Brampton East and parliamentary assistant.

Mr. Hardeep Singh Grewal: I’m proud to represent thousands of hard-working truckers in my riding. Every day, they ensure our grocery store shelves are stocked, our hospitals have the equipment they need, and our manufacturers have the resources they need to build Ontario-made products. But they tell me all the time the carbon tax adds unnecessary costs to each delivery. This only makes the cost of everything more expensive.

According to the Ontario Trucking Association, the carbon tax of 17.4 cents per litre increases fuel cost for a long-haul truck between $15,000 to $20,000 per truck per year.

Speaker, it’s clear that the carbon tax is hurting our economy and making life more expensive. We call on the federal government to do the right thing and get rid of the carbon tax.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Supplementary question.

Mr. Anthony Leardi: Mr. Speaker, I thank the parliamentary assistant for that answer.

The people of Ontario are certainly indebted to the hard-working men and women in the trucking industry who deliver the essential goods that we count on every day.

But, Speaker, the reality is that the impact of the carbon tax is having a bad impact on the trucking industry, and it ultimately affects every consumer. The cost to fuel the trucks to transport goods is passed on to the consumer who purchases those goods. This is a critical issue, and it impacts all Ontarians, including those who live in Kanata–Carleton, where over 1,500 people are employed in the trucking and warehousing industry. Unfortunately, the member for that riding is ignoring their concerns about the negative impact of this carbon tax.

Speaker, can the parliamentary assistant please elaborate on how the carbon tax impacts the trucking industry and all Ontarians?

Mr. Hardeep Singh Grewal: Thank you to the member from Essex for that amazing question.

Speaker, the NDP and the Liberals are so out of touch with reality right now. They claim that the carbon tax is designed to help people transition to other options. When it comes to long-haul trucking, there are no other options. The carbon tax is only a tax on the hard-working people who fill up their car, heat their homes, and rely on truckers to deliver their goods.

I don’t know the last time the member from Kanata–Carleton actually met with a trucker. I invite her to come to Brampton and meet with the hard-working men and women who deliver our goods. They will tell her that the carbon tax is making it harder for families to put food on the table, and it’s adding to inflation.

Road safety

Mr. Joel Harden: This question is to the Premier.

Yesterday was the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims. I was honoured to attend the Toronto ceremony led by Jessica Spieker, who joins us in the members’ gallery today, from Friends and Families for Safe Streets, who walked us through an Etobicoke neighbourhood, documenting hundreds of collisions that have caused serious injury or death to pedestrians and cyclists by reckless drivers. We can and we must act for change.

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After question period, we can vote for Bill 40, the Moving Ontarians Safely Act. This legislation has been debated in this House for 10 years by different caucuses. It is not a partisan issue. Can the Premier confirm to the House today that the government will be supporting Bill 40 at second reading?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): To respond, the government House leader.

Hon. Paul Calandra: I think that we were clear that we would not be supporting it on second reading. Having said that, there were a number of significant legislations that were brought in by the former Minister of Transportation with respect to road safety across the province of Ontario, and we’ll continue to build on that.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The supplementary question.

Mr. Joel Harden: I will say, Speaker—through you to the Premier and to the House leader—that’s a pretty disappointing answer. After 10 years of advocacy in this place, after members from every single political party in this House championing the exact words before this House in Bill 40—that is a very disappointing answer. It’s a disappointing answer to the 3,066 pedestrians who were struck by reckless drivers in 2022—these are the government’s own numbers—the 1,412 cyclists who were struck by reckless drivers. Speaker, 466 of those pedestrians were either critically injured or died. One hundred and thirty five of those cyclists were either critically injured or died.

Is there—I ask the government through you, Speaker—an acceptable amount of road violence in our streets? The government has taken action around stunt driving. They talk about safety a lot. But now is the moment to justify to this House, with real words, why you are deciding to vote against Bill 40. Tell your government; tell yourselves. This is the moment to stand for safety and vote for Bill 40. Please change your answer.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’ll remind the members to make their comments through the Chair.

To reply, the member for Brampton East.

Mr. Hardeep Singh Grewal: Thank you to the member for that great question.

Speaker, our government has done tremendous work to make sure that our roads stay safe. That’s why we have some of the safest roads in North America. When we take a look at legislation introduced by our government, we take a look at the MOMS Act and all of the wonderful things that came with that particular act. That was taking real action on ensuring that our roads continue to stay safe.

Like I said to the member opposite in debate earlier, our door is always open to take good ideas, but the proposed idea that’s been given to the ministry, labelling vulnerable road users, that is left up to the courts so they can make the right decision based on each individual case. Each accident is different, and the courts should have the power to make that determination, not a blanket legislation that’s going to take over and then label all of them into one particular category.

We’ll be introducing more legislation in the coming months, but our government is committed to ensuring that we have the safest roads in North America, and we’re open to taking all ideas because it’s a non-partisan issue.

Taxation

Ms. Laura Smith: My question is to the Associate Minister of Small Business.

Small businesses contribute significantly to Ontario’s economy; however, the carbon tax is making it more difficult for many small businesses to survive. That’s why it was so shocking to hear last Thursday that the member from Kanata–Carleton rose in this House to defend the federal carbon tax. The member claimed that the vast majority—the vast majority—of households in Ontario are better off with a price on carbon.

Speaker, the reality is that no one is better off because of the carbon tax. With over 6,000 retail trade employees working in Kanata–Carleton alone, many of these businesses and their workers feel this regressive carbon tax is negatively impacting them.

Can the associate minister please explain how the carbon tax impacts small businesses across Ontario?

Hon. Nina Tangri: Thank you to the great member from Thornhill for the question and for advocating so passionately for job creators in her riding.

I’ve had the privilege of hearing directly from entrepreneurs across the province, and maybe the member from Kanata–Carleton should do the same in her riding. Time and time again, they express real concern about the burden of rising costs from the federal carbon tax, combined with upcoming deadlines like CEBA loan repayments. The carbon tax inflates expenses at every step of the supply chain. Whether they’re farmers producing food, manufacturers leveraging our skilled workforce or shops anchoring our main streets, Ontario’s job creators all agree this punitive tax hits hardest just as they’re getting back on their feet.

Many business owners have shared fears that it could make them reduce staff, raise prices or even shut their doors for good. Unlike the Liberals and NDP, our government is listening to entrepreneurs. We’re taking action on affordability. We would like them to join us in calling on Ottawa to scrap the carbon tax.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Supplementary question?

Ms. Laura Smith: Thank you to the associate minister for standing up for small business owners across our province.

Our government must continue to respect the importance of small businesses. We know that the carbon tax is harmful to their success. Cutting the carbon tax has been one of our top priorities, since day one, in order for our small businesses to grow and thrive.

As our government works to make life more affordable for Ontarians, it’s concerning that the member from Kanata–Carleton is not supporting the small businesses in her riding.

Can the associate minister please elaborate on how our government continues to support small businesses in Ontario by fighting the federal carbon tax?

Hon. Nina Tangri: Thank you, again, to the member for the question.

I am proud to be part of a government under Premier Ford’s strong leadership, who has from the start spoken out against this job-killing tax. I’m glad to see Premiers, right across all political stripes, join us in calling on the federal government to expand exemptions for the carbon tax and to lessen the burden on consumers and job creators.

Every day I meet inspirational entrepreneurs who are pouring their hearts and souls into building something from nothing, providing jobs and hope. That’s why we’ve been there with our million-dollar investment in Futurpreneur Canada, which helps young entrepreneurs access financing, mentorship and resources to turn their bold ideas into thriving businesses—or Digital Main Street, which helps existing businesses create and enhance their online presence and generate jobs.

We’ve stepped up to the plate for small businesses. It’s time—

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Thank you. The next question.

Conservation officers

Mr. Guy Bourgouin: To the Premier: This is a critical time of the year when Ontario’s conservation officers are hard at work to deter unsafe hunting practices and protect wildlife. Conservation officers also investigate gruesome injuries and deaths that result from tragic hunting-related accidents, and they are responsible for laying charges in cases of careless hunting. They are working in some of Ontario’s most isolated locations, with limited access to support and assistance from other enforcement agencies. But conservation officers are not classified properly or compensated fairly for the work they do, causing low morale and a retention crisis.

My question: When will this government acknowledge the duties that conservation officers undertake and commit to reclassify them accordingly?

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The member for Hastings–Lennox and Addington and parliamentary assistant.

Mr. Ric Bresee: At this time of year, especially during hunting season, conservation officers play an incredibly important role in the protection and management of Ontario’s natural resources, to ensure that residents and visitors to Ontario can safely enjoy the province’s natural resources for generations to come.

Conservation officers connect with over 200,000 natural resource users from over 50 locations across the province annually.

We heard from our partners that we need more boots on the ground. In response, we’ve fulfilled our promise to create 25 new conservation officer positions, and that brings the total number of conservation officer positions to over 200 here in the province of Ontario.

During that posting, the ministry received and reviewed nearly 4,000 applications for these highly sought-after positions.

Conservation officers are the front line, safeguarding our natural heritage. This important work has been ongoing in Ontario for 130 years and will continue. We will continue to support it, and they will continue to protect our important natural resources.

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The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Supplementary? The member for Thunder Bay–Superior North.

MPP Lise Vaugeois: I’m hearing a lot of lip service from the government side. In the meantime, morale continues to decline because experienced conservation officers are leaving the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry to take jobs where their pay actually matches their training and experience.

Conservation officers are paid up to $31,000 less than OPP officers, despite being held to the same standards of training; they have the same levels of risk and the responsibility to carry sidearms. With a stroke of the pen, the government could provide the reclassification of these workers that these workers have long deserved.

Will this government recognize that the training and duties of conservation officers far exceed their compensation and commit to reclassification?

Mr. Ric Bresee: We are, of course, aware that OPSEU and the employer are working on a classification review. I’m actually quite confused by the idea that the NDP would support government interference in that process. I also understand that the director of our enforcement branch is part of the committee designed to review this classification. They will make sure that the work, the skills, the importance of the conservation officers are specifically addressed during this review. This government responded by creating new positions to support these officers, and we will continue to value the work of our conservation officers and the continued effort to support them in any way we can.

Taxation

Mr. Will Bouma: My question is for the Minister of Mines. Mining is an essential part of the supply chain that we are building for electric vehicles and is a source of significant economic opportunity. For many northern communities, mining provides stable and good-paying jobs and brings prosperity to regional economies. Unfortunately, the opposition has voted against every action our government has taken to support the mining sector.

Speaker, what’s even worse is that the independent Liberals and the opposition NDP support the federally imposed carbon tax, which harms this critical sector. While our government is taking urgent action, other members in this House are supporting a regressive tax which will hold back progress in expanding the mining sector.

Can the minister please explain the impact of the carbon tax on Ontario’s mining sector?

Hon. George Pirie: Thank you to the member from Brantford–Brant for this very important question.

Speaker, a U of T study shows that creating one new mine creates an over-$300-million increase in Ontario’s GDP and creates approximately 2,000 jobs. That’s why we want more mines. But the carbon tax is threatening these opportunities to grow our economy.

The NDP and the Liberals support this disastrous tax. They support hiking up fuel costs for the exploration companies in my riding that are working out in the bush, searching for new mines. They support hurting small businesses in Timmins by making it more expensive to get the drills turning and ship the core samples to the labs around Ontario. They support making it more expensive for large mining companies to reinvest their opportunities and extend mining opportunities in their own ridings.

Speaker, we need the opposition to join us in telling their friends in Ottawa to axe this tax.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Supplementary question?

Mr. Will Bouma: Thank you, Minister, for that response. This regressive carbon tax impacts Ontario’s mining competitiveness.

According to the Mining Association of Canada, the minimum federal carbon tax is set to increase by $15 per tonne per year until it reaches $170 per tonne in 2030.

At a time when our government has attracted investments that position Ontario to become the global leader in manufacturing every component of clean, zero-emission electric vehicles, the impact of the carbon tax will cause significant consequences.

It is unacceptable that the independent Liberals and the opposition NDP continue to support the federal carbon tax.

Can the minister please explain the impact of the carbon tax on major job creators for our economy, like the mining sector?

Hon. George Pirie: Thank you to the member from Brantford–Brant, again, for the very important question.

I’ve said it many times: There’s no electric vehicle revolution without mining.

I was encouraged this past year when the feds followed our lead by creating their own critical minerals strategy to support the homegrown electric vehicle supply chain. But they can’t have it both ways. You can’t put a tax that will raise the costs of our minerals at a time when we are competing globally. Yet, they’re imposing a tax that ensures that every part and process required to make electric vehicles is more expensive, especially our critical minerals. You heard it right, Speaker; the members opposite support the federal carbon tax that burdens the people and industries required to build EVs. It’s shameful that they support a tax that makes life more unaffordable for families and makes job-creating industries less competitive.

It’s time to axe this tax.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): That concludes our question period for this morning.

Notice of dissatisfaction

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Pursuant to standing order 36(a), the member for Scarborough–Guildwood has given notice of her dissatisfaction with the answer to her question given by the government House leader concerning transit agencies. This matter will be debated tomorrow following private members’ public business.

There are three members who wish to raise points of order.

Correction of record

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The member for Niagara Falls.

Mr. Wayne Gates: I’d like to correct my record. I said to the parliamentary assistant of the Minister of Health that the report was out five days ago; it was actually out 18 days ago.

Member’s birthday

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade has a point of order.

Hon. Victor Fedeli: On a point of order, I would like to wish the 26th Premier of Ontario a very happy birthday.

Applause.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): The member for Ottawa–Vanier has a point of order.

Mme Lucille Collard: I seek unanimous consent that, notwithstanding standing order 45(b)(iv), the time for debate on opposition day motion number 5 on subsidizing the cost of heat pumps and other energy-saving retrofits be apportioned as follows: 56 minutes to each of the recognized parties and eight minutes to the independent members as a group.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Ms. Collard is seeking the unanimous consent of the House that, notwithstanding standing order 45(b)(iv), the time for debate on opposition day motion number 5 be apportioned as follows: 56 minutes to each of the recognized parties and eight minutes to the independent members as a group.

Agreed? I heard a no.

Deferred Votes

Taxation

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): We now have a deferred vote on a motion for closure on the amendment to the amendment to the motion regarding taxes on fuels for home heating.

Call in the members. This is a five-minute bell.

The division bells rang from 1148 to 1153.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I’m going to ask the members to please take their seats.

On November 15, 2023, Mr. Jordan moved private member’s notice of motion number 70.

On November 15, 2023, Mr. Blais moved an amendment to the motion.

On November 16, 2023, Mr. Calandra moved an amendment to the amendment to the motion.

On November 16, 2023, Mr. Jordan moved that the question be now put.

We are now going to vote on Mr. Jordan’s motion that the question be now put. To explain, if this motion carries, I would then immediately put the question on Mr. Jordan’s original motion. This means that should the motion carry, both Mr. Blais’s amendment and Mr. Calandra’s amendment to the amendment would not proceed. If this closure motion does not carry, then the main motion, the amendment and the amendment to the amendment would remain on the order paper—just to make everything perfectly clear.

All those in favour of the motion will please rise one at a time and be recognized by the Clerk.

Ayes

  • Anand, Deepak
  • Armstrong, Teresa J.
  • Barnes, Patrice
  • Begum, Doly
  • Bethlenfalvy, Peter
  • Bouma, Will
  • Bourgouin, Guy
  • Brady, Bobbi Ann
  • Bresee, Ric
  • Byers, Rick
  • Calandra, Paul
  • Cho, Raymond Sung Joon
  • Cho, Stan
  • Clark, Steve
  • Coe, Lorne
  • Crawford, Stephen
  • Cuzzetto, Rudy
  • Dixon, Jess
  • Dowie, Andrew
  • Downey, Doug
  • Dunlop, Jill
  • Fedeli, Victor
  • Fife, Catherine
  • Flack, Rob
  • Ford, Doug
  • Ford, Michael D.
  • French, Jennifer K.
  • Gallagher Murphy, Dawn
  • Gates, Wayne
  • Gélinas, France
  • Ghamari, Goldie
  • Gill, Parm
  • Gretzky, Lisa
  • Grewal, Hardeep Singh
  • Hardeman, Ernie
  • Harris, Mike
  • Hogarth, Christine
  • Holland, Kevin
  • Jones, Trevor
  • Jordan, John
  • Kanapathi, Logan
  • Ke, Vincent
  • Kernaghan, Terence
  • Kerzner, Michael S.
  • Khanjin, Andrea
  • Kusendova-Bashta, Natalia
  • Leardi, Anthony
  • Lecce, Stephen
  • Lumsden, Neil
  • MacLeod, Lisa
  • Mamakwa, Sol
  • Mantha, Michael
  • Martin, Robin
  • McCarthy, Todd J.
  • McGregor, Graham
  • Mulroney, Caroline
  • Pang, Billy
  • Parsa, Michael
  • Pasma, Chandra
  • Piccini, David
  • Pierre, Natalie
  • Pirie, George
  • Quinn, Nolan
  • Rae, Matthew
  • Rakocevic, Tom
  • Rickford, Greg
  • Riddell, Brian
  • Sabawy, Sheref
  • Sandhu, Amarjot
  • Sarrazin, Stéphane
  • Sattler, Peggy
  • Saunderson, Brian
  • Shaw, Sandy
  • Skelly, Donna
  • Smith, Dave
  • Smith, David
  • Smith, Laura
  • Stevens, Jennifer (Jennie)
  • Stiles, Marit
  • Surma, Kinga
  • Tangri, Nina
  • Thompson, Lisa M.
  • Tibollo, Michael A.
  • Triantafilopoulos, Effie J.
  • Vanthof, John
  • Vaugeois, Lise
  • Wai, Daisy
  • Williams, Charmaine A.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): All those opposed to the motion will please rise one at a time and be recognized by the Clerk.

Nays

  • Blais, Stephen
  • Bowman, Stephanie
  • Collard, Lucille
  • Fraser, John
  • Hazell, Andrea
  • McCrimmon, Karen
  • Schreiner, Mike
  • Shamji, Adil

The Clerk of the Assembly (Mr. Trevor Day): The ayes are 88; the nays are 8.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I declare the motion carried.

I am now required to put the question on the main motion.

Mr. Jordan has moved private member’s notice of motion number 70, relating to carbon tax on fuels and inputs for home heating. Is it the pleasure of the House that the motion carry? I heard some noes.

All those in favour of the motion will please say “aye.”

All those opposed will please say “nay.”

In my opinion, the ayes have it.

Call in the members. This is another five-minute bell.

The division bells rang from 1158 to 1203.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Members will please take their seats.

On November 15, 2023, Mr. Jordan moved private member’s notice of motion number 70 relating to carbon tax on fuels and inputs for home heating.

All those in favour of the motion will please rise one at a time and be recognized by the Clerk.

Ayes

  • Anand, Deepak
  • Armstrong, Teresa J.
  • Barnes, Patrice
  • Begum, Doly
  • Bethlenfalvy, Peter
  • Blais, Stephen
  • Bouma, Will
  • Bourgouin, Guy
  • Brady, Bobbi Ann
  • Bresee, Ric
  • Byers, Rick
  • Calandra, Paul
  • Cho, Raymond Sung Joon
  • Cho, Stan
  • Clark, Steve
  • Coe, Lorne
  • Crawford, Stephen
  • Cuzzetto, Rudy
  • Dixon, Jess
  • Dowie, Andrew
  • Downey, Doug
  • Dunlop, Jill
  • Fedeli, Victor
  • Fife, Catherine
  • Flack, Rob
  • Ford, Doug
  • Ford, Michael D.
  • French, Jennifer K.
  • Gallagher Murphy, Dawn
  • Gates, Wayne
  • Gélinas, France
  • Ghamari, Goldie
  • Gill, Parm
  • Gretzky, Lisa
  • Grewal, Hardeep Singh
  • Hardeman, Ernie
  • Harris, Mike
  • Hogarth, Christine
  • Holland, Kevin
  • Jones, Trevor
  • Jordan, John
  • Kanapathi, Logan
  • Ke, Vincent
  • Kernaghan, Terence
  • Kerzner, Michael S.
  • Khanjin, Andrea
  • Kusendova-Bashta, Natalia
  • Leardi, Anthony
  • Lecce, Stephen
  • Lumsden, Neil
  • MacLeod, Lisa
  • Mamakwa, Sol
  • Mantha, Michael
  • Martin, Robin
  • McCarthy, Todd J.
  • McGregor, Graham
  • Mulroney, Caroline
  • Pang, Billy
  • Parsa, Michael
  • Pasma, Chandra
  • Piccini, David
  • Pierre, Natalie
  • Pirie, George
  • Quinn, Nolan
  • Rae, Matthew
  • Rakocevic, Tom
  • Rickford, Greg
  • Riddell, Brian
  • Sabawy, Sheref
  • Sandhu, Amarjot
  • Sarrazin, Stéphane
  • Sattler, Peggy
  • Saunderson, Brian
  • Shaw, Sandy
  • Skelly, Donna
  • Smith, Dave
  • Smith, David
  • Smith, Laura
  • Stevens, Jennifer (Jennie)
  • Stiles, Marit
  • Surma, Kinga
  • Tangri, Nina
  • Thompson, Lisa M.
  • Tibollo, Michael A.
  • Triantafilopoulos, Effie J.
  • Vanthof, John
  • Vaugeois, Lise
  • Wai, Daisy
  • Williams, Charmaine A.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): All those opposed to the motion will please rise one at a time and be recognized by the Clerk.

Nays

  • Bowman, Stephanie
  • Collard, Lucille
  • Fraser, John
  • Hazell, Andrea
  • McCrimmon, Karen
  • Schreiner, Mike
  • Shamji, Adil

The Clerk of the Assembly (Mr. Trevor Day): The ayes are 89; the nays are 7.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I declare the motion carried.

Motion agreed to.

Moving Ontarians Safely Act, 2023 / Loi de 2023 visant à assurer à la population ontarienne des déplacements sûrs

Deferred vote on the motion for second reading of the following bill:

Bill 40, An Act to amend the Highway Traffic Act to provide for consequences to those who cause injury or death to certain road users / Projet de loi 40, Loi modifiant le Code de la route pour prévoir les conséquences qu’encourent les personnes qui causent des blessures à certains usagers de la route ou leur décès.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Call in the members. This is a five-minute bell.

The division bells rang from 1207 to 1212.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): Members will please take their seats.

On November 16, 2023, MPP Harden moved second reading of Bill 40, An Act to amend the Highway Traffic Act to provide for consequences to those who cause injury or death to certain road users.

All those in favour, please rise and remain standing until recognized by the Clerk.

Ayes

  • Armstrong, Teresa J.
  • Begum, Doly
  • Bell, Jessica
  • Blais, Stephen
  • Bourgouin, Guy
  • Bowman, Stephanie
  • Brady, Bobbi Ann
  • Collard, Lucille
  • Fife, Catherine
  • Fraser, John
  • French, Jennifer K.
  • Gates, Wayne
  • Gélinas, France
  • Glover, Chris
  • Gretzky, Lisa
  • Harden, Joel
  • Hazell, Andrea
  • Karpoche, Bhutila
  • Kernaghan, Terence
  • Mamakwa, Sol
  • Mantha, Michael
  • McCrimmon, Karen
  • Pasma, Chandra
  • Rakocevic, Tom
  • Sattler, Peggy
  • Schreiner, Mike
  • Shamji, Adil
  • Shaw, Sandy
  • Stevens, Jennifer (Jennie)
  • Stiles, Marit
  • Vanthof, John
  • Vaugeois, Lise
  • Wong-Tam, Kristyn

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): All those opposed to the motion will please rise and remain standing until recognized by the Clerk.

Nays

  • Anand, Deepak
  • Barnes, Patrice
  • Bethlenfalvy, Peter
  • Bouma, Will
  • Bresee, Ric
  • Byers, Rick
  • Calandra, Paul
  • Cho, Raymond Sung Joon
  • Cho, Stan
  • Clark, Steve
  • Coe, Lorne
  • Crawford, Stephen
  • Cuzzetto, Rudy
  • Dixon, Jess
  • Dowie, Andrew
  • Downey, Doug
  • Dunlop, Jill
  • Fedeli, Victor
  • Ford, Doug
  • Ford, Michael D.
  • Gallagher Murphy, Dawn
  • Ghamari, Goldie
  • Gill, Parm
  • Grewal, Hardeep Singh
  • Hardeman, Ernie
  • Harris, Mike
  • Hogarth, Christine
  • Holland, Kevin
  • Jones, Trevor
  • Jordan, John
  • Kanapathi, Logan
  • Ke, Vincent
  • Kerzner, Michael S.
  • Khanjin, Andrea
  • Kusendova-Bashta, Natalia
  • Leardi, Anthony
  • Lecce, Stephen
  • Lumsden, Neil
  • MacLeod, Lisa
  • Martin, Robin
  • McCarthy, Todd J.
  • McGregor, Graham
  • Mulroney, Caroline
  • Pang, Billy
  • Parsa, Michael
  • Piccini, David
  • Pierre, Natalie
  • Pirie, George
  • Quinn, Nolan
  • Rae, Matthew
  • Rickford, Greg
  • Riddell, Brian
  • Sabawy, Sheref
  • Sandhu, Amarjot
  • Sarrazin, Stéphane
  • Saunderson, Brian
  • Skelly, Donna
  • Smith, Dave
  • Smith, David
  • Smith, Laura
  • Surma, Kinga
  • Tangri, Nina
  • Thompson, Lisa M.
  • Tibollo, Michael A.
  • Triantafilopoulos, Effie J.
  • Wai, Daisy
  • Williams, Charmaine A.

The Clerk of the Assembly (Mr. Trevor Day): The ayes are 33; the nay are 67.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): I declare the motion lost.

Second reading negatived.

The Speaker (Hon. Ted Arnott): There being no further business at this time, this House stands in recess until 1 p.m.

The House recessed from 1216 to 1300.

Afternoon meeting reported in volume B.