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In today’s edition:
- Conservative motion focuses on danger pay for CF members
- Bill on tax credit for maintenance of heritage buildings, back before the House
- Ministers make the rounds at committees on the supplementary estimates
- Senate committee hears from minister Wilson-Raybould on delays in the justice system
- Trade committee to study the steel industry’s competitiveness
- Ag committee’s report on Next Agriculture Framework presented to House
TODAY IN THE HOUSE
Business of supply – opposition day motion
Thursday’s agenda in the House will be dominated by debate on a Conservative opposition day motion calling on the government to reverse a decision to take away the danger pay (a tax benefit for the hardship and risk associated with their deployment) of soldiers stationed at Camp Arifjan in Kuwait.
Full text of motion: That the House call on the government to show support and appreciation for the brave men and women serving in the Canadian Armed Forces by reversing its decision to take away from the soldiers fighting against ISIS the tax benefit which provides them with $1,500 to $1,800 per month for the hardship and risk associated with their deployment, and to retroactively provide the payment to members stationed at Camp Arifjan whose tax relief was cancelled as of September 1, 2016.
Private members’ business
A final hour of debate at second reading will be given to the bill standing in the name of CPC MP Peter Van Loan, which seeks to create a tax credit for the rehabilitation of historic buildings in Canada in order to assist individuals who undertake costly renovations to maintain historic buildings. At the end of the debate, the question will be called on the motion to refer the bill to the environment committee for review. If requested, a vote will be scheduled following the next break week.
C-323, An Act to amend the Income Tax Act (rehabilitation of historic property)
Bill Summary: “This enactment amends the Income Tax Act to establish a tax credit for expenses related to the rehabilitation of a historic property. It also establishes a tax deduction for the capital cost of property used in the course of such a rehabilitation.”.
Today’s House committee meetings
- Departmental performance reports and the supplementary estimates will be the focus of members at the government operations and estimates committee, when they question Treasury Board president Scott Brison and officials from Treasury Board and Public Works and Government Services.
- The fisheries and oceans committee will also delve into the supplementary estimates on Thursday morning with the assistance of Minister Dominic LeBlanc, parliamentary secretary Terry Beech and department officials who will address members’ questions.
- Department officials will be joined by Regional Ontario Chief Isadore Day, at the Indigenous and Northern affairs committee as members hold their first meeting on the default management and prevention policy.
- Members of the foreign affairs and international committee are expected to circle back to their study of the situation in Eastern Europe and Central Asia 25 years after the end of the Cold War and will seek insight from representatives of the Darna Centres and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
- Industry committee members have scheduled a second meeting for clause by clause consideration of the legislation to change Canada’s corporate governance regime (Bill C-25).
- It will be a busy day at the agriculture committee as discussions continue on the PMRA Decision on the neonicotinoid insecticide Imidacloprid continue. Representatives from a variety of agricultural organizations including the Canadian Honey Council, the Grain Farmers of Ontario and vegetable and fruit growers are slated to appear. Witnesses from the David Suzuki Foundation and Équiterre will also appear.
- Following a private meeting with Elections Canada officials, the procedure and House affairs committee will meet with democratic institutions minister Karina Gould and with Privy Council officials for a briefing.
- Two topics are on the agenda at the official languages committee. One hour will be devoted to a discussion of issues related to the enumeration of rights-holders under Section 23 of the Charter with officials from Stats Canada and Industry Canada. Following that, members will hear from Réseau national de formation en justice regarding the full implementation of the Official Languages Act in the justice system.
- Health care stakeholders, including the Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association and the Canadian Nurses Association have been invited to appear before the health committee to provide insight on the bill to create a federal palliative care framework (C-277).
- Justice officials will be on hand to assist members of the justice and human rights committee with their clause-by-clause consideration of the bill proposing to crack down on hate-based property damage, vandalism & other acts of criminal mischief (C-305).
- Over at the international trade committee, stakeholders from the steel industry are expected to provide testimony to inform a study of the Canadian steel’s ability to compete internationally. Expected witnesses include: United Steelworkers and the Canadian Steel Producers Association.
- Defence minister Harjit Sajjan and senior officials will face questions from national defense committee members on items outlined in the Supplementary Estimates (C).
- Meanwhile at the natural resources committee, the study on clean technology in the natural resource sectors continues with appearances by Analytica Advisors Inc., the Energy Services Association of Canada, Terrestrial Energy Inc., and the Conference Board of Canada.
Today’s Senate committee meetings
- Senators on the agriculture and forestry committee have scheduled another meeting to continue discussing the acquisition of farmland and its potential impact on the farming sector. Testimony is expected from Perennia Food and Agriculture Inc. and Sociedad Rural Argentina.
- President of the Canadian Steel Producers Association, Joe Galimberti, will appear before senators at the energy, environment, and natural resources committee to share his organization’s perspectives on the effects of transitioning to a low carbon economy.
- A high-tech discussion is planned at the social affairs, science and technology committee where Senators will meet with representatives from the AGE-WELL Network of Centres of Excellence Inc. and the Centre for Surgical Invention and Innovation regarding the role of robotics, 3D printing, and artificial intelligence in the Canadian healthcare system.
- The study on the development of a national corridor to enhance and facilitate commerce and internal trade will resume at the banking, trade, and commerce committee where witnesses from the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency and the Freight Management Association of Canada will face questions from senators.
- The legal and constitutional affairs committee has a busy day planned with two separate hearings scheduled. In the morning, senators will hear from legal and academic experts on matters pertaining to delays in Canada’s criminal justice system. Following that, justice minister Jody Wilson-Raybould is slated to appear at a second meeting of the committee on the same topic.
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Find complete details of parliamentary committee meetings and other events of interest in our legislative calendar!
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT!
- AGRI: the agriculture committee presented a report to the House on Wednesday from the hearings on the Next Agricultural Policy Framework. The report provides 18 recommendations and requests a government response. Conservative and NDP dissenting opinions are included as part of the report.
Committee membership changes
Changes were announced to the memberships of two standing committees:
- ETHI: Liberal MP Ali Ehsassi will replace Rémi Massé on the information, privacy and ethics committee
- CIMM: Liberal MP Gary Anandasangaree will replace Ali Ehsassi on the citizenship and immigration committee
Bill progress, key votes, and other legislative activities
- PASSED: NDP opposition day motion on tax fairness was passed by a margin of 205-77.
- PASSED: Bill S-217, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (detention in custody) “Wynn’s Law” passed second reading stage (154-128) and has been referred to the standing committee on justice and human rights for review
- PASSED: Bill C-211, Federal Framework on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Act passed second reading stage (284-0) and has been referred to the standing committee on health for review.
- PASSED: Bill S-201, Genetic Non-Discrimination Act, (as amended by the justice committee) was passed at third reading by a margin of 222-60.
Private members’ business
The House unanimously agreed to adopt Conservative interim leader Rona Ambrose’s bill on sex assault education for judges at second reading stage. Bill C-337, An Act to amend the Judges Act and the Criminal Code (sexual assault) has now been referred to the standing committee on justice for review.
IN THE DAYS AHEAD
Friday, March 10, 2017
- Private members’ business — Bill C-291, An Act to amend the Food and Drugs Act (genetically modified food) — (second reading, first time debated) — Sponsor: Pierre-Luc Dusseault (MP for Sherbrooke)
MPs are heading back to their ridings for a week of constituency work. When the House of Commons adjourns on Friday, March 10, it will remain adjourned until Monday, March 20 at 11:00 am.
Monday, March 20, 2017
- Government business — debate to resume on Bill C-22, concerning the national security committee of parliamentarians
- Private members’ business — Bill C-322, An Act to amend the Railway Safety Act (road crossings) — (second reading, first time debated)— Sponsor: Hélène Laverdière (MP for Laurier—Sainte-Marie)
- Take-note debate — Government motion No. 12 — the house will resolve itself into committee of the whole for a take-note debate on Operation UNIFIER
Tuesday, March 21, 2017
- Business of supply — the final opposition day of the current supply period is scheduled
- Private members’ business — M-103, motion on systemic racism and religious discrimination (resuming debate) — Sponsor: Iqra Khalid (MP for Mississauga—Erin Mills)
- Vote — on the Conservative opposition day motion on a Canadian Forces tax benefit (debated on March 9).
Wednesday, March 22, 2017
- Government business — debate to begin on Bill C-17, an act to amend the Yukon Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Act and to make a consequential amendment to another Act
- Vote — to concur in the fifth report of the human resources committee seeking an extension of time to consider Bill C-243, An Act respecting the development of a national maternity assistance program strategy and amending the Employment Insurance Act (maternity benefits)
- Ways & Means — Budget 2017 presentation at 4:00 p.m.