This is page numbers 689 - 717 of the Hansard for the 12th Assembly, 5th Session. The original version can be accessed on the Legislative Assembly's website or by contacting the Legislative Assembly Library. The word of the day was community.

Topics

Members Present

Mr. Allooloo, Mr. Antoine, Hon. Silas Arngna'naaq, Mr. Arvaluk, Mr. Ballantyne, Hon. Nellie Cournoyea, Mr. Dent, Mr. Gargan, Hon. Stephen Kakfwi, Mr. Lewis, Hon. Jeannie Marie-Jewell, Hon. Rebecca Mike, Hon. Don Morin, Hon. Richard Nerysoo, Mr. Ng, Mr. Ningark, Mr. Patterson, Hon. John Pollard, Mr. Pudlat, Mr. Pudluk, Hon. John Todd, Mr. Whitford, Mr. Zoe

---Prayer

Item 1: Prayer
Item 1: Prayer

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The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Good morning. Mr. Clerk, would you please ring the bells, we are short of a quorum. Item 2, Ministers' statements. Item 3, Members' statements. The honourable Member for Amittuq, Mr. Allooloo.

Nunavut Tunngavik Presidential Election
Item 3: Members' Statements

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Titus Allooloo Amittuq

Thank you, Madam Speaker. I would like, today, to stress the importance of the upcoming election of the Nunavut Tunngavik president which is being held this coming Monday. The Nunavut Caucus has a good working relationship with the aboriginal group which represents Inuit within Nunavut and I'm confident that this relationship will continue after the election of the new president.

I would like to thank Mr. James Eetoolook of Taloyoak, who has been acting president for the past few months, for the hard work and dedication he has shown to the organization.

---Applause

Madam Speaker, to those who are running for the presidency, I, on behalf of the Nunavut Caucus, wish you well. I believe the voters will choose the best person for this important position. To my fellow Inuit, please do not forget to vote on Monday. The polls are open from 10:00 am to 7:00 pm and are located at annex C of the Yellowknife Inn. If you are not on the voters list and are eligible to vote, you can be sworn in when you come to vote. Let us show the rest of Canada that we are involved and interested in our own future. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

Nunavut Tunngavik Presidential Election
Item 3: Members' Statements

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The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Thank you. Item 3, Members' statements. The honourable Member for Yellowknife Centre, Mr. Lewis.

Electing A Government Leader By Popular Vote
Item 3: Members' Statements

March 18th, 1994

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Brian Lewis Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Prior to and during this session, I've been working on a discussion paper on electing a leader by popular vote. Members recall that this was an item that was supposed to have been discussed in Cambridge Bay at our strategic planning workshop. The matter was deferred. This issue has been a subject of informal discussion during the six years I've been a Member. It has not proceeded to a full-blow examination in Caucus for two reasons. First, ordinary Members enjoy the privilege of being able to choose the Cabinet. Second, Ministers enjoy being Ministers in a system which makes the Premier leader in name, but with limited authority compared to her southern counterparts.

Change doesn't come very easily or very quickly, Madam Speaker. Some Members will recall the long period of time it took to make many of our internal elections, which took place behind closed doors, into a public process. That was quite a battle. There is widespread disenchantment with the political process today. Citizens have indicated they want more mechanisms for them to be involved in the issues important to them. During the last decade, at least one political party has been formed and has obtained considerable public support for one reason only, and that promise is the promise to involve citizens more in the political process, and no real political platform beyond that.

In the absence of political parties, one obvious form of direct democracy which could work in the Northwest Territories is the election of the Premier in a general election. I believe the issue should be examined at our strategic planning meeting in Fort Smith. I will table a paper outlining how a leader could be elected, while retaining the essential power of the Assembly to remove both Cabinet and Government Leader. I will table, today, a short paper which examines the ramifications and technical problems in relation to choosing a leader by popular vote. Thank you.

Electing A Government Leader By Popular Vote
Item 3: Members' Statements

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The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Thank you. Item 3, Members' statements. The honourable Member for Baffin South, Mr. Pudlat.

The High Cost Of Airfares In The Baffin
Item 3: Members' Statements

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Kenoayoak Pudlat Baffin South

(Translation) Thank you, Madam Speaker. This is not the first time that I am going to talk about this through a Member's statement. In Baffin South, we have been paying a high cost of living and also high costs of air freight and airfares. We are very concerned about the high costs of airfares. For example, from Iqaluit to Lake Harbour is only about 25 to 30 minutes and it costs $127 one way. Madam Speaker, I have talked about the children's airfares. As soon as they reach the age of two, they have to pay full airfares. I would like to ask the Department of Transportation if they could do something about the high costs of airfares in the communities. Thank you.

The High Cost Of Airfares In The Baffin
Item 3: Members' Statements

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The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Thank you. Item 3, Members' statements. The honourable Member for Aivilik, Mr. Arvaluk.

The High Cost Of Living In Small Northern Communities
Item 3: Members' Statements

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James Arvaluk Aivilik

Thank you, Madam Speaker. (Translation) Today, I would like to talk about the concern I have and the concerns that have been expressed by my constituents, with regard to the high cost of living and high cost of products that people buy from the stores. It is not just about my constituency, it concerns all the communities that have no road access.

I know, Madam Speaker, that in the north the cost of products is higher and they have a limited amount of stores in the communities. If there is only one store, and the co-op is not as strong as it should be in the communities, the prices are very high for groceries and other products. Madam Speaker, I would like to also say that Consumer Affairs should be protecting the consumers in the north. In the bigger communities the prices are not as high as in the smaller communities. I would like the government to look into the high costs of products in small communities. Thank you, Madam Speaker.

The High Cost Of Living In Small Northern Communities
Item 3: Members' Statements

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The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Thank you. Item 3, Members' statements. The honourable Member for Yellowknife Frame Lake, Mr. Dent.

Absence From The House
Item 3: Members' Statements

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Charles Dent Yellowknife Frame Lake

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Madam Speaker, I rise today to advise the House and my constituents that I will be absent from the House next week. As Members know, my wife delivered our new son prematurely in Montreal last week.

---Applause

And I have taken the advice, sagely offered by many in this House, that I should get me hence to Montreal to bring them back.

---Applause

Absence From The House
Item 3: Members' Statements

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The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Thank you. Item 3, Members' statements. The honourable Member for Natilikmiot, Mr. Ningark.

Appreciation To NWT Literacy Council
Item 3: Members' Statements

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John Ningark Natilikmiot

Thank you, Madam Speaker. Madam Speaker, on behalf of the MLAs of this legislature, I would like to thank the NWT Literacy Council for providing T-shirts for all of us. Being able to speak in any language is a privilege, but being able to read is equally important. I would like to commend the NWT Literacy Council for their hard work in trying to promote reading and writing, not only in the area of English, but as well in other languages. Thank you.

---Applause

Appreciation To NWT Literacy Council
Item 3: Members' Statements

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The Speaker Jeannie Marie-Jewell

Thank you. Item 3, Members' statements. The honourable Member for Yellowknife South, Mr. Whitford.