This is page numbers 885 - 912 of the Hansard for the 12th Assembly, 7th 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 chairman.

Topics

Question 439-12(7): Annual Cost Of Simultaneous Translation In Assembly
Item 6: Oral Questions

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Nellie Cournoyea Nunakput

Mr. Speaker, I will take that question as notice. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Question 439-12(7): Annual Cost Of Simultaneous Translation In Assembly
Item 6: Oral Questions

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. The question was taken as notice. Item 6, oral questions. Item 7, written questions. Item 8, returns to written questions. Item 9, replies to opening address. Item 10, petitions. Mr. Dent.

Item 10: Petitions
Item 10: Petitions

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Charles Dent Yellowknife Frame Lake

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I would like to present Petition No. 6-12(7); it is in support of the continued existence of the victims' services program. Mr. Speaker, as a result of our budget considerations and because it appears there would not be sufficient funds allocated to ensure the program will continue, this petition was circulated over the past few days. The last line of the petition reads, "We, the undersigned, believe victims should be supported and assisted in their time of crisis and strongly urge all funding bodies to adequately fund the Yellowknife victims' services programs. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Item 10: Petitions
Item 10: Petitions

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Item 10, petitions. Item 11, reports of standing and special committees. Item 12, reports of committees on the review of bills. Item 13, tabling of documents. Mr. Nerysoo.

Item 13: Tabling Of Documents
Item 13: Tabling Of Documents

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Richard Nerysoo Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I wish to table Tabled Document 86-12(7) entitled Community Choices: Laying the Foundation for Income Support Reform - Minister's Forum on Income Support Reform,

April 1995, in English and Inuktitut.

Item 13: Tabling Of Documents
Item 13: Tabling Of Documents

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Item 13, tabling of documents. Mr. Arngna'naaq. Mr. Kakfwi, your point of order.

Point Of Order

Item 13: Tabling Of Documents
Item 13: Tabling Of Documents

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Stephen Kakfwi Sahtu

Mr. Speaker, in reviewing Hansard, I have noticed on page 2052 that I believe there was an occasion yesterday when the Member for Thebacha challenged the chair. I wish to ask for a ruling on this. Mr. Speaker, I quote you as saying "I believe the question is hypothetical." The Member for Thebacha responds by saying categorically, "I don't believe it is hypothetical," and goes on to say further, "I know I shouldn't question your ruling." Whether or not this is intentional or inadvertent, I believe the impression is there. It is certainly in the Hansard that the Speaker is being challenged. So I believe that we need to deal with this and perhaps a retraction and an apology would be in order. Thank you.

Item 13: Tabling Of Documents
Item 13: Tabling Of Documents

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Some Hon. Members

(Microphones turned off)

Speaker's Ruling

Item 13: Tabling Of Documents
Item 13: Tabling Of Documents

April 7th, 1995

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

I would like to thank the Member for bringing the issue up. First of all, I would like to say that I thank the Members for the respect and confidence that they have in me by selecting me. I do review the unedited Hansard on a daily basis. I review the unedited Hansard, so as to make every effort to ensure that, as Speaker, I am upholding the rules and practices and being understanding of the actions of Members of this House.

In addition, I want to be sure that the chair is not, by any action or omission, bringing into question its impartiality or sound judgement. As Speaker, if I find that I have made an error in judgement or have provided the House with information that is not correct, I believe I am bound to advise the House and admit my mistakes so as to ensure that I am serving the Members to the best of my ability.

As Members will recall, yesterday during question period, the Member for Thebacha raised a question to the Minister of Finance concerning inclusion of Metis health benefits funding in the interim supply bill. The questions and supplementaries to Oral Question 428-12(7) are contained on pages 2050 to 2053. During the exchange, the chair advised the Member for Thebacha that her second supplementary question may have been hypothetical. I would like to quote my comments when I informed the Member, and I quote from page 2052 of unedited Hansard:

"Can I ask, Mrs. Marie-Jewell, if you could rephrase the question? I believe the question is hypothetical. Perhaps the question should be if the budget is approved. Can you rephrase your question?"

The point that has given me concern was the response by the Member for Thebacha to my statement on the admissibility of her second supplementary. I quote the Member's comments from page 2052 of unedited Hansard:

"I don't believe that is hypothetical. But, Mr. Speaker, I know I shouldn't question your ruling. I would like to ask the Minister of Finance whether or not he will consider giving Metis people reimbursement of funds for the expenses they incurred as of April 1st. Thank you."

I should note again that I asked the Member to rephrase her question, which she did, and was answered by the Minister.

I am sure the Member for Thebacha, as a former Speaker and occupant of this chair, understands that it is sometimes difficult for the Speaker to immediately comprehend procedural points and explain to an offending Member that they are out of order. As all Members are aware, the Speaker is protected against reflections on his or her actions, which is a question of privilege that is afforded the occupant of the chair. This is a long-standing practice, and I quote from Beauchesne's 6th edition, Citation 168; that:

"Reflections upon the character or actions of the Speaker may be punished as breaches of privilege. The actions of the Speaker cannot be criticized incidentally in debate or upon any form of proceeding except by way of a substantive motion."

I find that the Member for Thebacha's comments yesterday in question period were critical of my actions, and her qualification did not lessen the criticism. When I was elected as Speaker, I hoped that one of the reasons that Members voted for me was my demonstrated ability to be fair and understanding in all situations. In my term as Speaker, I was hoping and praying that there would not be reflections made on the actions I take while occupying the chair. I will not, however, spout my responsibility and it is unfortunate and not with any pleasure that I have to request the Member for Thebacha to withdraw her comments. Mrs. Marie-Jewell.

Item 13: Tabling Of Documents
Item 13: Tabling Of Documents

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Jeannie Marie-Jewell Thebacha

Mr. Speaker, as I had said in discussing this issue with you this morning, it wasn't my intention to question your ruling, as I had stated earlier. And I certainly want to assure the House that it certainly wasn't, and has not been, my intention to question your ruling. I do request that the comments be withdrawn, because they were not done with any type of intention on my part to question the ruling that was made, in formulating my question to the Minister of Finance. Thank you.

---Applause

Item 13: Tabling Of Documents
Item 13: Tabling Of Documents

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Item 13, tabling of documents. Mr. Dent.

Item 13: Tabling Of Documents
Item 13: Tabling Of Documents

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Charles Dent Yellowknife Frame Lake

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I would like to table Tabled Document 87-12(7), the conference report from the first constitutional conference of the western NWT, it is entitled "Working Towards Consensus," and is published by the Constitutional Development Steering Committee. It is a record of the constitutional conference which was held January 18 to 22, 1995 here in Yellowknife.

Item 13: Tabling Of Documents
Item 13: Tabling Of Documents

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Item 13, tabling of documents. Mr. Arngna'naaq.

Item 13: Tabling Of Documents
Item 13: Tabling Of Documents

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Silas Arngna'naaq Kivallivik

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I wish to table the following document. Tabled Document 88-

12(7), review of the draft environmental impact statement guidelines for the BHP diamond mine, presentation by the Government of the Northwest Territories to the BHP diamond mine environmental assessment review process. Thank you.

Item 13: Tabling Of Documents
Item 13: Tabling Of Documents

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Item 13, tabling of documents. Item 14, notices of motion. Item 15, notices of motions for first reading of bills. Item 16, motions. Item 17, first reading of bills. Item 18, second reading of bills. Item 19, consideration in committee of the whole of bills and other matters: Bill 1, Appropriation Act, No. 2, 1995-96; Bill 13, An Act to Amend the Fair Practices Act; Bill 16, An Act to Amend the Retirement Plan Beneficiaries Act; Bill 19, An Act to Amend the Elections Act, No. 2; Bill 20, Loan Authorization Act, 1995-96; Bill 22, Forgiveness of Debts Act, 1994-95; Bill 23, Write-off of Debts Act, 1994-95; Bill 24, Community Employees' Benefits Act; Bill 27, An Act to Amend the Land Titles Act; Committee Report 2-12(7), Report on the Legislative Action Paper on the Office of Ombudsman for the Northwest Territories; Committee Report 3-12(7), Report on the Review of the Legislative Action Paper Proposing New Heritage Legislation for the Northwest Territories; Committee Report 4-12(7), Report on the Review of the 1995-96 Main Estimates; Committee Report 5-12(7), Report on the Review of Rewriting the Liquor Laws of the Northwest Territories: A Legislative Action Paper; Committee Report 6-12(7), Report on the Review of the Legislative Discussion Paper on the Draft of the New Education Act; and, Committee Report 7-12(7), Report on the Second Annual Report, 1993-94, of the Languages Commissioner of the NWT, with Mr. Whitford in the chair.