This is page numbers 303 - 319 of the Hansard for the 13th 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 corporation.

Topics

Members Present

Honourable Jim Antoine, Honourable Charles Dent, Mr. Erasmus, Honourable Sam Gargan, Mrs. Groenewegen, Mr. Henry, Honourable Stephen Kakfwi, Mr. Krutko, Honourable Michael Miltenberger, Mr. Morin, Mr. Ootes, Mr. Rabesca, Honourable Floyd Roland, Honourable Vince Steen.

Oh, God, may your spirit and guidance be in us as we work for the benefit of all our people, for peace and justice in our land and for the constant recognition of the dignity and aspirations of those whom we serve. Amen.

Item 1: Prayer
Item 1: Prayer

Page 303

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you, Mr. Antoine. Good morning.

Speaker's Ruling

Before we proceed with the orders of the day, I wish to provide my ruling on point of order raised yesterday by Mr. Morin regarding comments made by Mr. Kakfwi in which Mr. Kakfwi made reference to the names of private citizens as well as some current public servants.

I have reviewed the unedited Hansard from yesterday. As well, I have reviewed previous Speakers' Rulings in this area and I would like to quote from a ruling I made on February 26, 1998. I would like to quote the key portion of that ruling without repeating it in its entirety, and I quote:

I will not permit comments, whether written or spoken in this Legislature, that have the tendency to question the personal integrity of others outside the House or impute motives to those unable to respond or which have the impact of adversely reflecting on the character of those persons outside of this Legislature.

As I have stated, I have reviewed the unedited transcripts from yesterday and I cannot find any instances where Mr. Kakfwi made comments which may have questioned anyone's integrity, imputed motives or adversely reflected on the character of any person outside of this Legislature.

Therefore, I rule that Mr. Morin does not have a point of order. However, it is always important that Members uphold the spirit and intent of past rulings in that regard and once again I would caution all Members to consider comments they make with this advice in mind. Thank you.

--Applause

Item 2, Ministers' statements. Mr. Antoine.

Minister's Statement 43-13(7): Ministers Absent From The House
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 303

Jim Antoine Nahendeh

Mr. Speaker, I wish to advise Members that the Honourable Michael Miltenberger will be absent from the House today from approximately 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. to participate in a conference call between the federal/provincial/territorial Ministers responsible for Social Policy Reform.

Mr. Speaker, I also wish to advise Members that the Honourable Stephen Kakfwi will be absent from the House today from approximately 11:45 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. to speak about the Economic Strategy at a meeting of the Yellowknife Chamber of Commerce in Yellowknife. Mahsi, Mr. Speaker.

Minister's Statement 43-13(7): Ministers Absent From The House
Item 2: Ministers' Statements

Page 303

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Ministers' statements. Item 3, Members' statements. Mr. Krutko.

Member's Statement 118-13(7): Anniversary Of Signing Of Gwich'in Land Claim
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 303

David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I rise today regarding the Gwich'in people and the Gwich'in tribal council and the Gwich'in land claim agreement. If people do not know, today is the Gwich'in holiday in which April 22, 1992, is when the Gwich'in comprehensive land claim agreement was signed by the Gwich'in tribal council and the Governments of the Northwest Territories and Canada in Fort McPherson. Since then, Mr. Speaker, a lot has happened regarding the land claims proceedings in which they have established land claim institutions, they have provided the Gwich'in with a land base and certain land management rights and they are also presently negotiating the self-government agreement process. As well, they established institutions under those claims regarding the Gwich'in Cultural Society, the Tl'oondih Healing Society and Raven Resource Councils in their communities. One thing that I have noted, Mr. Speaker, in this House where I have made a lot of statements on behalf of the constituents I represent and also the land claim groups, the Inuvialuit and the Gwich'in, where I find that there is still is a lot of work to be done to ensure those land claim agreements are implemented and carried forth.

Mr. Speaker, I made comments in this House about the Tl'oondih Healing Society, the question about economic measures of the Gwich'in land claim agreement, participation in the Inuvialuit agreement and also certain rights that pertain to the aboriginal organizations to be involved in what this government does regarding economic changes in this government and the question about the Northern Accord process.

Mr. Speaker, I stand here proud to be a Gwich'in but also proud of the success that has been made to date by the Gwich'in Tribal Council and the people of the Mackenzie Delta and especially the Gwich'in leaders that have brought the land claim to where it is today. There is still a lot of work to do, Mr. Speaker, so I challenge this government to continue to work hand in hand with this organization. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

--Applause

Member's Statement 118-13(7): Anniversary Of Signing Of Gwich'in Land Claim
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 304

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Members' statements. Mr. Ootes.

Member's Statement 119-13(7): National Volunteer Week And Community Service Awards
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 304

Jake Ootes Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, this is national volunteer week, April 18th to the 25th, and volunteers are the backbone of many community organizations here in the Territories. I understand that we have over 2,000 organizations and in Yellowknife alone there are some 300. Together these agencies create more that 400 jobs and contribute an estimated $13 million to the economy. There is a message here for the government, Mr. Speaker, these agencies for the most part cannot exist without a coordinator, someone to recruit, train and supervise the volunteers. Without coordinators the agencies are severely hindered in their ability to operate. Yet when government revenues fall, paid coordinators are often the first to be eliminated. Volunteers pick up the slack and fill the gaps in the social system left by government budget cuts. Government must learn to appropriately value the voluntary sector here in the north.

This Sunday, Mr. Speaker, I would like to make reference to the community service awards that will be presented during ceremonies at St. Patrick High School here in Yellowknife. Some 36 volunteers will be honoured, 12 youth volunteers will be singled out, four corporate citizens will be recognized for their outstanding contributions. I extend thanks to all the dedicated community minded people who volunteer their time and service to the north. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

--Applause

Member's Statement 119-13(7): National Volunteer Week And Community Service Awards
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 304

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Members' statements. Mr. Rabesca.

Member's Statement 120-13(7): Congratulations To Students In Aurora College Metalworks Program
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 304

James Rabesca North Slave

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Today, Mr. Speaker, I would like to congratulate the ten students that took part in the Aurora College Jewellery and Metalwork Program. Yesterday they showed the public what they have achieved. Unfortunately I was not able to attend their show, I do understand that it was a great success and a few items they made were sold. This alone would make these students feel proud of their accomplishments.

They have worked very hard over the last few months learning this very interesting and rewarding skill. As the Minister stated yesterday, if funding is available this program will continue. I certainly hope that we can find the dollars needed for this as it seems to be a very good program and I am sure the students would like to work with diamonds in the near future.

In closing, I would again like to congratulate these ten students for their hard work and dedication. I am positive they are proud of their work and dedication. I am positive they are proud of their work, as we all are. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Member's Statement 120-13(7): Congratulations To Students In Aurora College Metalworks Program
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 304

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Members' statements. Mr. Henry.

Member's Statement 121-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 304

Seamus Henry Yellowknife South

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, sometimes progress can be very slow when it comes to enacting legislation. In my Member's statement of April 13th last, I spoke of the need to change or enact several pieces of legislation. One such piece is the Labour Standards Act. In some ways, Mr. Speaker, I have come full circle in regard to the Labour Standards Act. I have sought and received the support of two previous Ministers of Justice to enact changes to this legislation. I had first approached, Minister Ng, and then Minister Arlooktoo. I also questioned the Minister responsible for regulatory reform, Mr. Kakfwi. Mr. Speaker, this House even supported a motion I presented over a year ago to review and amend the Labour Standards Act as it pertains to commissioned employees. I have also written letters to both the Ministers of the day in an attempt to respond to concerns from both employees and employers alike.

Mr. Speaker, amendments are badly needed to this act. Employees affected are commissioned employees such as real estate agents, waitresses and waiters, taxi drivers, salespersons, hairdressers, as well as the employers of these occupations, to name a few. I had been told by Mr. Arlooktoo a review had been done on this act. My motion of February, 1998, requested that the government bring these amendments before the Legislative Assembly for consideration at the fall sitting last year.

In June of last year the Minister of the day, Mr. Arlooktoo, indicated his department was planning to have the necessary changes go through the committee process and the House as part of the bill last fall. October was to be the month, Mr. Speaker, but that never happened. All Members who have been working for legislative change know the process can be all but exhausting and to say the least frustrating, but I vowed to follow this through, Mr. Speaker. Later today I will be questioning the Minister of Justice, Mr. Kakfwi, about amendments that are needed to the Labour Standards Act and I sincerely hope that he will honour the commitments made by previous Ministers. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Member's Statement 121-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 304

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Members' statements. Mrs. Groenewegen.

Member's Statement 122-13(7): Appreciation Of Cabinet Performance
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 304

Jane Groenewegen Hay River

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, it is Friday, but I want to assure you that I am very serious about what I am going to say. We are a smaller group here now. It has been quite a transition. This has been our first real session since there have only been 14 of us in the House. I would like to say that I am very much appreciating the way in which the Cabinet has been dealing with the questions, even with a smaller group we are going a full hour in question period

--Applause

and I very much appreciate the sincerity with which this Cabinet is handling questions from this side of the House. I see it being done without any kind of posturing or mind games or shenanigans or anything and I have had opportunity already to compliment Mr. Roland last week on how far he has come already in the short time that he has been the Minister, in the way in which he has been handling the questions.

I also noticed in today's Yellowknifer that Premier Antoine had a brunch in Edmonton with 75 northern students that were attending post-secondary training down there and gave them some good advice with respect to their education, returning to the north, staying in schools, and so I just wanted to make this comment because I am observing these little things, and we have a lot of work to do here in the west and I wanted to very much appreciate my colleagues on the other side of the House today. Thank you.

--Applause

Member's Statement 122-13(7): Appreciation Of Cabinet Performance
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 305

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Members' statements. Mr. Erasmus.

Member's Statement 123-13(7): Arctic Canada Trading Company
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 305

Roy Erasmus Yellowknife North

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. My statement today is about the Arctic Canada Trading Company. Mr. Speaker, the Arctic Canada Training Company is, or perhaps it would be better to say was, a fledgling company of the Northwest Territories Development Corporation. It was started to market the Development Corporation's subsidiaries' goods and also bought and sold arts and crafts that were made in the communities. Mr. Speaker, all businesses need time to get off the ground, to build up a base, to get the customers, make a good name. One year is not long enough. Yesterday we asked the Minister of Resources, Wildlife and Economic Development about the reductions that had been made to Arctic Canada Trading. He indicated that two outlets were closed because of timelines and the need to renew leases.

In fact, Mr. Speaker, a reliable source indicates that the Calgary outlet had an ongoing lease so the company had to eat the losses on that lease and, in fact, Mr. Speaker, not only two outlets were closed, we no longer have any of those outlets. If we have no outlets can we actually say we have a marketing agency? It is very difficult for me to see that. I do not particularly like being misled, and if that is what has occurred. Mr. Speaker, I will be asking the appropriate Minister questions in this area later on today. Thank you.

Member's Statement 123-13(7): Arctic Canada Trading Company
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 305

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Members' statements. Mr. Morin.

Member's Statement 124-13(7): Development Of NWT Development Corporation
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 305

Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I have a Member's statement on the NWT Development Corporation and how the NWT Development Corporation is developing under the new western government and how it seems to be developing. Mr. Speaker, I can remember well when we formed the NWT Development Corporation in previous Assemblies, we passed an act, The Northwest Territories Development Corporation Act. At that time, Mr. Speaker, we passed that act, we had put in a board of directors of the NWT Development Corporation. The reason that the board of directors was installed and the reason why we formed the NWT Development Corporation is because economic development and our economic development in this government could not work in our communities and do any substantial work to get economic development going. We formed the NWT Development Corporation, a hands-on approach and a stand-alone approach as well, with a board that is answerable through its chairman to the Minister, in this government. We formed this Development Corporation to assist our small communities in developing businesses and subsidizing those businesses to lower the draw on our social programs. That was the reason that we formed this board.

Yesterday, in answering questions in this House, Mr. Speaker, the Minister responsible, I believe has answered the questions maybe to the best of his ability, I do not know, but yesterday in answering those questions he says, they were reviewing plans, they were reviewing operations. I have from sources, Mr. Speaker, that they have already actioned those plans, they have already actioned things within the NWT Development Corporation and Arctic Holding Company. Now, Mr. Speaker, my understanding is that there is a board in place, I do not know how many members are on that board, whether it is a legal board or not, I may find that out through question period, as long as my questions are not trivial or quibbling, but I will try my best to ask those questions today. Mr. Speaker, the NWT Development Corporation has a board of directors. Is the board of directors involved at all in the restructuring, or is everything done out of the Minister's office within a new realm of this government? Also, Mr. Speaker, reviewing Hansard yesterday, I do have questions for the Premier today that I will ask about the performance of his Minister yesterday. Thank you.

Member's Statement 124-13(7): Development Of NWT Development Corporation
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 305

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Members' statements. Again, I would like to remind Members about using unparliamentary language in this chamber. The word, misled, is unparliamentary and I would like to caution the Members on how they use the language in this chamber. Item 4, returns to oral questions. Mr. Antoine.

Return To Oral Question 31-13(7): Statements Made By Cabinet Members
Item 4: Returns To Oral Questions

Page 305

Jim Antoine Nahendeh

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, there is a return to an oral question here asked by Mr. Krutko on March 23rd, statements made by Cabinet Ministers. Mr. Speaker, the honourable Member for Mackenzie Delta, on March 23rd, asked me what I would do about the conduct of an unidentified Minister who made an unspecified public statement after a meeting in Calgary. Mr. Speaker, I know of no statements made publicly by any Minister that contradicts the policies of this government.

The honourable Member also asked what action I would take as a result of comments made by an unidentified Minister in Caucus. Mr. Speaker, we meet in Caucus as MLAs to discuss issues facing all of us. Caucus is a forum for frank and open discussion. It is a forum for Members to air concerns and put forward views on the issues of the day. When Ministers speak in Caucus it is my expectation that they will not speak out against government policy. I do not recall any Ministers speaking against government policy in Caucus. Mr. Speaker, to my knowledge, no Minister has spoken against government policy in public or in Caucus so I see no reason to take any action as a result of conduct of any Minister. Mahsi.

Return To Oral Question 31-13(7): Statements Made By Cabinet Members
Item 4: Returns To Oral Questions

Page 306

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Returns to oral questions. Item 5, recognition of visitors in the gallery. Item 6, oral questions. Mr. Ootes.

Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

Jake Ootes Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Honourable Mr. Dent, Minister of the Financial Management Board. It is in relationship to the excluded employees and the equal pay settlement. I have, on a number of occasions, Mr. Speaker, raised the issues of librarians and pay equity who have found themselves, librarians have found themselves in a class code with parks officers and wildlife technicians. Since wildlife technicians and parks officers is a mostly male-dominated class code, and librarians is predominantly female-dominated, it raises some concerns. The education requirements and job duties for librarians and wildlife technicians are substantially different. For example, librarians have financial responsibilities to administer a budget, large budgets in most cases, and librarians have post- graduate university degrees, as an example. Librarians' work is much more closely allied with archivists, records management coordinators and legislature researchers. My question for Mr. Dent is that the librarians believe that there was a settlement went to nurses as an occupational group instead of a class code and, I wonder if the Minister could tell me if there is any way the pay equity settlement can apply to an occupational group or professional group rather than a class code? Thank you.

Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

The Minister responsible for the Financial Management Board, Mr. Dent.

Return To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

Charles Dent Yellowknife Frame Lake

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. To the best of my knowledge the answer is no.

Return To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Ootes.

Supplementary To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

Jake Ootes Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Given that the librarians only found out about who else was in their class code just on a recent basis, could the Minister tell us if there is a mechanism by which they can appeal this situation, or to be classed as an occupational group?

Supplementary To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Dent.

Further Return To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

Charles Dent Yellowknife Frame Lake

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Yes, the placement of librarians in that particular class code could be appealed. The first step, as I understand it, would be to write to their supervisors asking for a review of their location and then there would have to be some consultation done with the unions because the class codes are not set arbitrarily by government. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Further Return To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Ootes.

Supplementary To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

Jake Ootes Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I appreciate the Minister's direction on that. I believe the librarians have been in touch with their union, but I wonder if the government on its part will also initiate some discussion with the union on this end?

Supplementary To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Dent.

Further Return To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

Charles Dent Yellowknife Frame Lake

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. As I said, Mr. Speaker, in my previous answer, the proper process is for the librarians to write to their supervisor which would then start the ball rolling on the government side. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Further Return To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Final supplementary, Mr. Ootes.

Supplementary To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

Jake Ootes Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Does that mean that the government will take up the issue, then, with the union if they contact their supervisors? Thank you.

Supplementary To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Dent.

Further Return To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

Charles Dent Yellowknife Frame Lake

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. As I said, that would start the process. There are a number of steps that would have to be undertaken before any change was made if it was found that a change was indeed justified. The first step is for the workers to appeal their classification codes. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Further Return To Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Question 107-13(7): Pay Equity For Librarians
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Oral questions. Mr. Krutko.

Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 306

David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Health and Social Services. It is in regard to a motion that I passed in this House asking for support for the Tl'oondih Healing Society and also I had a commitment from the previous Premier to work along with myself and the people of the Tl'oondih Healing Society and the Minister of Health and Social Services. Yet, Mr. Speaker, one of the mandates of this society was to work along with people, especially families, to assist them in healing and dealing with the

day-to-day problems in our communities, especially alcoholism, drug abuse, violence, suicides. Yet, Mr. Speaker, it is not clear to me exactly what direction this government is going when it comes to assisting people who are in need of help, who are trying to quit drinking, or trying to find a way to deal with the violence in the family. Also the problem that we find our youth and the children in, in a lot of our communities.

One of the commitments made in the Budget Address is to help aboriginal organizations meet their political aspirations and support other parties to recognize. This society was established through the Gwich'in land claim agreement, it was established as an organization within the Gwich'in Tribal Council. I would like to know from the Minister exactly what is his department doing to ensure that we have some organization or some system in place to assist the regions dealing with the alcohol and drug problems, and also what assistance is this government giving to make sure we have some involvement in what happens in that area in the regions?

Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 307

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

The Minister of Health and Social Services, Mr. Roland.

Return To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 307

Floyd Roland Inuvik

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, the department has continued to work with the regions, the boards, to ensure, for example, that alcohol and drug services are available to the residents of the territory, and we are continuing to monitor and ensure that programs are available to all the residents throughout the territory. In the area with the Tl'oondih healing society, there has been work done in the past with the Member and the previous Minister in trying to come up with a solution. At this point in time, we have not moved further than what was already discussed and put forward at those discussions, but I would like to assure the Member that my work with the department is to ensure we have facilities and programs available to all residents of the territories. Thank you, Mr. Speaker

Return To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 307

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Krutko.

Supplementary To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 307

David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, in regard to the Minister saying they have worked along with the Tl'oondih Healing Society, I would like to make the Minister aware that we have not received much help from the regional health board in the Inuvik region, especially trying to receive funding and trying to make sure there are programs available for assistance from this society. I would like to ask the Minister, what is his department doing to ensure that the motion that was passed in this House is being carried out?

Supplementary To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 307

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Roland.

Further Return To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 307

Floyd Roland Inuvik

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. As stated earlier, with the health boards, we have passed on a lot of the power and ability to do work for this government on to them. We still monitor and maintain the process and the standards that are out there. I would have to check with the department as to what work has gone on in reference to the motion that was passed in this Assembly. As I said earlier, there was a meeting held with the Member, I believe, and members from that organization with the previous Minister and some items were laid out. Requests for more information were made. I am not sure where it has moved from that point. I will get back to the department and find out what we have done in the meantime. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Further Return To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 307

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Krutko.

Supplementary To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 307

David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. In regard to the different alcohol and drug organizations that are in place, I believe most of the organizations are based in the Yellowknife area. I would like to ask the Minister, what is he doing to ensure the regions and the outlining areas of Yellowknife also have an opportunity to deliver these programs and services rather than just basically centralizing this program. I would like to know, is there a strategy in place that the government is doing to ensure that the regions and groups such as the Tl'oondih Healing Society will have an opportunity to operate in the future without seeing all the programs delivered out of Yellowknife?

Supplementary To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 307

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Roland.

Further Return To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 307

Floyd Roland Inuvik

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would like to assure the Member that the department is in no way intending to centralize the services that are out there. There have been some concerns raised lately as to an aspect of one of the drug and alcohol treatment facilities that operate in the territories. There has been ongoing work to try and see what we can do as a department to reprofile to some degree what we are doing right now. As I stated yesterday, the ministerial forum that we are developing will look at how we deliver health services and drugs and alcohol is one of those in there, to ensure that all residents will continue to receive support from this government. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Further Return To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 307

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Krutko.

Supplementary To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 307

David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would like to ask the Minister if he can get me the information, in regard to seeing exactly how much money has been allocated to Tl'oondih Healing Society in the last three years? If he can have that information available to me as soon as possible.

Supplementary To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 307

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Roland.

Further Return To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

Floyd Roland Inuvik

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Yes, I will get that information for the Member.

Further Return To Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Question 108-13(7): Support For Tl'oondih Healing Society
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral question. Mr. Henry.

Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

Seamus Henry Yellowknife South

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, my question is to Minister Kakfwi on the Labour Standards Act. I made a statement earlier today on it, and I spoke about the plight to get much needed changes to the Labour Standards Act. My questions are to the Minister and the first question, Mr. Speaker, is could the Minister of Justice advise this House when legislative changes to the Labour Standards Act will be presented to the Members of this Assembly? Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

The Minister of Justice, Mr. Kakfwi.

Return To Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

Stephen Kakfwi Sahtu

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would hope to be able to go to Cabinet with a legislative amendment proposal within the next month or so in time, perhaps to have it dealt with if Cabinet agrees to have it dealt with, for the June session. That is the tentative schedule that I have in mind. Thank you.

Return To Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Henry.

Supplementary To Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

Seamus Henry Yellowknife South

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. My question to the Minister is, have those amendments been prepared by the Department of Justice, the legislation, has it been prepared? Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Supplementary To Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Kakfwi.

Further Return To Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

Stephen Kakfwi Sahtu

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, they are being prepared by the Department of Justice at the present time. Thank you.

Further Return To Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Question 109-13(7): Amendments To Labour Standards Act
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Mrs. Groenewegen.

Question 110-13(7): Report To Minister Of Pw&s On Issues Raised By Conflict Of Interest Commissioner
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

Jane Groenewegen Hay River

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, my question is, I am not sure, for the Minister of Public Works Services or for the Premier, but I will let them decide. Mr. Speaker, I want to say that I do appreciate the Honourable Vince Steen tabling this report in the House yesterday done by McLennan and Ross with respect to the Department of Public Works and Services. My question is who, and when was it decided, to undertake this review? Who decided it, and when was it decided? Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Question 110-13(7): Report To Minister Of Pw&s On Issues Raised By Conflict Of Interest Commissioner
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Just by way of process, the Premier can address a question if the Minister is not in the House. In this case the Minister is. The Minister of Public works and Services, Mr. Steen.

Return To Question 110-13(7): Report To Minister Of Pw&s On Issues Raised By Conflict Of Interest Commissioner
Question 110-13(7): Report To Minister Of Pw&s On Issues Raised By Conflict Of Interest Commissioner
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

Vince Steen Nunakput

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I am not clear on the exact answer to the Member, so I will take the question as notice and get back to her. Thank you.

Return To Question 110-13(7): Report To Minister Of Pw&s On Issues Raised By Conflict Of Interest Commissioner
Question 110-13(7): Report To Minister Of Pw&s On Issues Raised By Conflict Of Interest Commissioner
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

The question is taken as notice. Oral questions, Mr. Morin.

Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. In reviewing Hansard yesterday, Mr. Speaker, I guess I am a bit confused because there seem to be contradicting answers in Hansard from the Minister of RWED. Maybe the Minister could just clarify for me which is the right one, or the wrong one, or how he could clarify this for me. When he was responding on page 462 of Hansard yesterday, Mr. Speaker, he says:

We have asked the new president of the Development Corporation, Mr. Koe, to prepare, with the assistance of the board of the Development Corporation, a new business plan with a reduced operating budget for this year. I believe the meetings between the deputy minister of my department and Mr. Koe, the new president of the Development Corporation, they have started as of today.

That was yesterday.

They have begun to undertake work to review the operations of the Development Corporation and to see how it could perhaps improve on the way it operates.

Some of the questions that come up, Mr. Speaker, for instance, are the size of the headquarters operations and the amount of money allocated to Arctic Trading, which is the marketing arm of the Development Corporation. Then on page 469, the Minister states:

in regard to how will we market the products that are produced in our communities and when will the business plan be ready to reflect that. I would say that Arctic Trading can continue if the president and the board believe it is the best way to market. The challenge, as I said, is for the new president and the board to prepare a business plan that will allow them to continue operating a headquarters and Arctic Trading, if they wish.

These are the responses we got yesterday, Mr. Speaker. I ask the Minister, are these responses accurate today? Thank you.

Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 308

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

The Minister of Resources, Wildlife and Economic Development, Mr. Kakfwi.

Return To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 309

Stephen Kakfwi Sahtu

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I always try to provide straightforward answers the best I can. Sometimes it is not always possible to be short and succinct and to the point. That was the reason I said at one point that I did not want to end up quibbling about the details and there I meant, as Members know, Mr. Soloy was the president of the Development Corporation for the last number of years. He recently left to get into private business. Mr. Koe is now the new president, appointed by the Premier. We had an interim president, Mr. Joe Handley, we had an ongoing board, members from Nunavut whose terms came to an end at the end of March. We have had new appointments of boards, so it is important to make sure that we are clear about who made what decisions at what times.

The answers that are in Hansard, I agree may not be very clear, but I think probably when we get into Main Estimates and presentation of our budget and have a more free-flowing discussion regarding the plans for the Development Corporation, Members will be in a much better position to pursue the kinds of questions that they were asking yesterday. In the meantime, I am trying to answer questions the best I can and I have also reviewed Hansard and there is nothing in there that is misleading concerning the answers I gave yesterday and I stand by them. Thank you.

Return To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 309

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Morin.

Supplementary To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 309

Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. The Minister may think it is quibbling on small details, but when a major shift in the Development Corporation is happening, Mr. Speaker, that is not a small detail. The Minister has 12 years experience. The Minister has the ability to know, or he should know, what is happening within his Development Corporation that he is ultimately responsible for. I have already quoted from Hansard two of his answers and he goes on also on page 469 to say, "I believe that it was the view of the staff and the people in charge of the Development Corporation that following Mr. Soloy leaving that we could no longer rationalize and continue to operate these outlets in southern Canada and that business decisions had to be made and they were made." So it was a business decision made that contradicted the two previous statements I just quoted. It was a business decision made. He quotes a business decision was made, so he must know about that business decision. What was this business decision that was made, and who made it? He must at least know that. Thank you.

Supplementary To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 309

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Kakfwi.

Further Return To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 309

Stephen Kakfwi Sahtu

Mr. Speaker, we have products that are produced by some of our communities and subsidiaries here in the north that have historically been sold through private outlets. In recent years we have opened up exclusive outlets in the south. It is my understanding that they have been losing money, and they have been losing money consistently. Therefore, I understand it to be a straight business decision to close those outlets and to find a different way of marketing our products to the south. It is clear that we do not need exclusive outlets in order to market our products and without waiting for a review I understand the decision to close some of these outlets was made. I am not clear at this time whether Mr. Soloy made that decision, whether it was Mr. Handley, but it was the reason I took the question as notice yesterday. Thank you.

Further Return To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 309

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Morin.

Supplementary To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 309

Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I am getting more and more confused by this Minister. Now he states that a decision was made, but he stated yesterday in regard to how well we will market the products that are produced in our communities and when will the business plan be ready to reflect that, "I would say that Arctic Trading can continue if the president and the board believe it is the best way to market. The challenge, as I said, is for the new president and the board to prepare a business plan that will allow them to continue operating a headquarters and Arctic Trading, if they wish". Now the Minister says, no, there has been a decision made. He does not know who made it, he is responsible for it, does not know who made the decision that these places have been closed because they are losing money. So this statement here is not a totally true statement, then, Mr. Speaker. Thank you.

Supplementary To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 309

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. I do not have the Hansard in front of me but yesterday some questions were asked in which those questions were taken as notice, understand, and those questions cannot be asked again until the Minister responds to them. I am just trying to find the section with regard to the rules on the question that is taken as notice. I would like to ask the cooperation of the Members that the only questions that you can ask relating to a question that has been taken as notice is you can ask the Minister when you can expect the response. Where the question has been taken as notice, the question cannot be asked until it has been responded to by the Minister. Mr. Morin.

Supplementary To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 309

Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. When I was asking the question of the Minister, asking a very fundamental question on the change of direction of the NWT Development Corporation yesterday, which this Minister is responsible for, this Minister ultimately is responsible to this House for the NWT Development Corporation. A major shift in their marketing strategy, not a small detail, a major shift in marketing strategy. This Minister, with his amount of experience, should have that information at his fingertips in order to answer the question. That is all I am saying. Thank you.

Supplementary To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 309

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Again, the question has been taken as notice. I will ask the Minister to respond by answering it or taking it as notice or declining to answer by saying it has been taken as notice and he will respond to the Member. Mr. Kakfwi.

Further Return To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

Stephen Kakfwi Sahtu

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Perhaps there is some confusion about the difference between sales and marketing. Arctic Trading Company is the marketing arm of the Development Corporation. It is not intended to exclusively set up outlets in order to sell a product, it is intended to market it in the best way it can. Arctic Trading Company will continue to operate. The new president and board of the Development Corporation will make a decision in regard to what is the best way for us to market the products that we have now.

The closing of outlets is a business decision. We are losing money. As I understand, the outlets that were closed are in Vancouver and Calgary. There is still one in Toronto, which the Government of Nunavut and ourselves are discussing transferring to them. We will continue to have an outlet provided to us to sell whatever products we have here in the west. There is no major shift in the approach to marketing we have at this time. We will see what the new president and board have to say about it. What I did take, I understood to have taken, as notice yesterday, Mr. Speaker, was the dates in which decisions were made, who made the decisions and on what basis. That I do not have the ability to respond to, so that is what I took as notice. Who is responsible for the decisions, what decisions were made, and on what dates. Thank you.

Further Return To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Morin. Final supplementary.

Supplementary To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Under the Northwest Territories Development Corporation Act, on the NWT Development Corporation there should be a board of directors for the corporation composed of not fewer than seven and not more than twelve directors appointed by the Commissioner and the Executive Council. The Minister, in responding to two questions, referred to the board of directors of the NWT Development Corporation and I know it would be a breach of the Act if you did not have this minimum of seven. Can the Minister at this time please give me the name, that must be in his knowledge, the names of the seven directors on the NWT Development Corporation. Thank you.

Supplementary To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Kakfwi.

Further Return To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

Stephen Kakfwi Sahtu

Mr. Speaker, I do not agree that it is necessarily a breach if you are not fully in compliance with an act. Breach is a bit of an over-statement by the Member. There are times when members of boards resign, and there are times when we are unable to comply with our own legislation. These are one of the times. Because of division, a number of board members have left, along with the president, Mr. Soloy. So we now have, at this time, five new members of the board and there are three additional members that are going to be proposed for appointment to the Cabinet in the next week. By the end of next week I hope to be able to have a fully operational board in place to work with the president. Thank you.

Further Return To Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On Nwt Development Corporation
Question 111-13(7): Veracity Of Minister's Statements On NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Mr. Erasmus.

Question 112-13(7): Composition Of Board Of Directors Of NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

Roy Erasmus Yellowknife North

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. The Minister had indicated that due to division members had left and it is not really a breach of an act not to have seven members, although it distinctly states in there that you have to have a minimum of seven members on the board. Can the Minister of RWED please indicate when was the last time there was seven members on that board?

Question 112-13(7): Composition Of Board Of Directors Of NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

The Minister of Resources, Wildlife and Economic Development, Mr. Kakfwi.

Return To Question 112-13(7): Composition Of Board Of Directors Of Nwt Development Corporation
Question 112-13(7): Composition Of Board Of Directors Of NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

Stephen Kakfwi Sahtu

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I would have to take that question as notice. I am not aware of the number of board members that we have had over the last year and what dates these members had meetings and conducted business. Thank you.

Return To Question 112-13(7): Composition Of Board Of Directors Of Nwt Development Corporation
Question 112-13(7): Composition Of Board Of Directors Of NWT Development Corporation
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

The question is taken as notice. Oral questions. Mr. Ootes.

Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

Jake Ootes Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. My questions will be again for Mr. Dent on the pay equity issue. The Minister recently informed me that equal pay offers have gone out to about 460 excluded employees, pay information regarding pay equity, and that further analysis is needed to look at all the class codes to see if there are other excluded employees that should be included for pay equity, and that this is expected to be completed by the spring. I wonder if the Minister could tell us if the 460 total that seems to have been identified includes both current employees and former employees? Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

The Minister Responsible for the Financial Management Board, Mr. Dent.

Return To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

Charles Dent Yellowknife Frame Lake

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I believe the answer is yes.

Return To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Ootes.

Supplementary To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

Jake Ootes Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Could the Minister tell us how he is ensuring that all excluded employees are informed as to their pay equity status?

Supplementary To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Dent.

Further Return To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 310

Charles Dent Yellowknife Frame Lake

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, as reviews are concluded and it is determined whether or not offers should be made, the employees will be notified in

writing with the offer. There has been no publicity undertaken to advise excluded employees that this is underway, but those employees who have contacted the secretariat have been advised that the work is underway and when they might expect to see an offer. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Further Return To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 311

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Ootes.

Supplementary To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 311

Jake Ootes Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. When the pay equity issue arose, I believe some advertisements were placed for the employees that are under the bargaining unit. I wonder if the Minister has a plan to place advertisements and make announcements regarding the excluded employees so that those former employees who may not be in touch with this government will have an opportunity, perhaps through friends and other sources such as a newspaper advertisement in the north, or public announcements, they may be able to hear about this. Could the Minister tell us if he is looking at a possible publicity campaign on this?

Supplementary To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 311

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Dent.

Further Return To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 311

Charles Dent Yellowknife Frame Lake

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I do not believe that such a campaign has been envisioned given the small numbers of people who have not already been contacted. There are very few where the reviews of the class codes have not been concluded and the expectation is that will be done within the next several weeks so it was not felt necessary to spend monies on an advertising campaign when, in fact, most people already have been contacted. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Further Return To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 311

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Final supplementary, Mr. Ootes.

Supplementary To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 311

Jake Ootes Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I appreciate we do not want to spend a lot of money on this area, but I think we do have a responsibility to try and at least make those employees who are no longer with the government, some effort should be made to contact them in all fairness to those employees. I wonder if the Minister could reconsider, to perhaps do several small advertisements in territorial publications for a short period of time?

Supplementary To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 311

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Dent.

Further Return To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 311

Charles Dent Yellowknife Frame Lake

Mr. Speaker, I am prepared to discuss this with my staff at FMBS, but I would want to be careful that we do not confuse people because we cannot reopen the offer to unionized employees before we have an agreement with Nunavut. There is a bit of a concern here that we do not create some additional confusion when, in fact, we can probably individually contact the people who may be able to participate in a settlement. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Further Return To Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Question 113-13(7): Pay Equity
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 311

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Oral questions. Mr. Krutko.

Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 311

David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, my question is to the Premier. As I mentioned in my opening statement, today is a Gwich'in holiday and yet, Mr. Speaker, it has been seven years since the Gwich'in have signed their agreement and they have implemented, but yet, Mr. Speaker, there are still a lot of outstanding issues which have not been resolved and a lot of them deal with this government. We talk about the economic measures chapter, we talk about the Northern Accord, of that agreement, and I also mentioned programs and services that organization is trying to implement on behalf of their membership especially in regard to the Tl'oondih Healing Society. Yet, Mr. Speaker, it has been seven years, but these issues are still outstanding. I would like to ask the Premier in his role as Premier and knowing that these issues are out there, what can he do as a Premier to ensure that the Gwich'in issues are going to be addressed in a process that will not take seven years to complete?

Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 311

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Premier.

Return To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 311

Jim Antoine Nahendeh

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, the Gwich'in final agreement came into effect on December 22, 1992. There are processes that are in place to implement this agreement. It is a three part agreement, the Government of Canada as well as the Gwich'in and the GNWT are party to signatories to this final agreement. There a number of boards that have been established. The Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act finally came into being December 22, 1998, last year. Things are progressing along, it is not that nothing is happening. There are a lot of things going on.

Return To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 311

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Krutko.

Supplementary To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 312

David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I am aware that there is an implementation committee established as part of the land claim agreement but I am talking about programs specific to this government. Mr. Speaker, I moved a motion in this House asking for support from this government to assist in the Tl'oondih Healing Society to ensure they had resources to implement their alcohol and drug program, yet to date nothing has happened with that motion.

Another example, Mr. Speaker, is the question of assisting the aboriginal groups such as the questions raised in this House in regard to the band, the band corporation in Fort McPherson where nothing has been done there again. Mr. Speaker, another issue that I have not seen much progress on is the whole area of the economic chapter that the aboriginal groups feel is the responsibility of this government to carry out when it comes to negotiated contracts, sole source contracts and what activities take place in the Gwich'in settlement region. I would like to ask the Premier exactly what is this government doing to ensure that we improve the working relationship between the aboriginal organizations, especially the Gwich'in Tribal Council to carry out our responsibilities on programs and services this government delivers, to ensure we do not end it up in arbitration like the case of the Tetlit'zheh Construction, who is now in arbitration, who may have to go bankrupt because of the Government of the Northwest Territories. Can the Minister tell me why are these issues all out there and nothing is happening with it?

Supplementary To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 312

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Again, to remind the Members to keep once you have done your preamble, there is a focus on the supplementary regarding that preamble. In this case it was the Gwich'in agreement. I also would like to remind the Members that once you have established your preamble you can ask three supplementaries regarding that preamble. There is no need to carry on the preambles every time you ask a question and I would caution the Members because this is going on. I will remind the Members as to what is your supplementary and not to carry on with preambles every time you ask a question that is focused on one area. Mr. Antoine.

Further Return To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 312

Jim Antoine Nahendeh

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, in continuing to reply to the honourable Member on the implementation of the Gwich'in final agreement, especially on the economic measures, that was the original question I understand from the Member's statement as well. The economic measures, for the honourable Member, is that the Gwich'in final agreement obligates the government to meet with the Gwich'in Tribal Council not less than once every three years to review the effectiveness of the program relating to the objectives of chapter 10. Since the Sahtu final agreement has the same provision of the economic measures, a meeting between the Gwich'in Tribal Council, the Sahtu Secretariat Incorporated, the Government of the Northwest Territories and Canada officials was held on November 4, 1998, last fall. The Government of the Northwest Territories was represented by the ministry officials and regional superintendents and staff of the Departments of RWED, Education, Culture and Employment, Public Works and Services, Transportation, and the Housing Corporation. One of the recommendations from that meeting was that the implementation committee consider creating an economic measures working group to review the economic measures provisions in the Gwich'in final agreement as well as the Sahtu final Agreement. A meeting of the working group was held here at the end of March to carry on with this agreement on the economic measures, so we need all the three parties to come to an agreement on the interpretation of the economic measures of chapter 10 of the Gwich'in final agreement. This is what we are all working towards, Mr. Speaker.

In regard to the other programs that the honourable Member mentioned, that motions were in the House in assisting the Tl'oondih Alcohol and Drug, as well as assisting the band corporation in Fort McPherson, nothing has been done about it. He was saying, as well, he mentioned Tetlit'zheh Development Corporation in arbitration, I think I heard that in the last couple of days in the session as well and yes, I understand that the Tetlit'zheh Development Corporation is in arbitration, but it is not in arbitration with the Government of the Northwest Territories. It is in arbitration with the Beaufort Delta Divisional Board. This is what I understand. We have to get it clear once questions are asked is that, sure there are programs there and there are provisions in the Gwich'in Final Agreement that set out how to review the final agreement and the different chapters, and I think we are working with the Gwich'in Tribal Council and the Government of Canada to try to make sure we comply with the provisions of the Gwich'in final agreement. Thank you.

Further Return To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 312

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Supplementary, Mr. Krutko.

Supplementary To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 312

David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Can the Premier tell me, is there an avenue an organization, such as the Gwich'in Tribal Council, I will use an example, where the Tl'oondih Healing Society is the responsibility of this government who funds agencies, such as the Beaufort Divisional Health Board in Inuvik, which seems to be where the problem lies. There is no appeal process for that organization. They do not feel they are making progress in a certain area. Is there a way they can bring it to another level, say yourself as Premier? I hear a lot of questions in this House where it seemed to be handed back to the regions or education board, the health board. But the problem lies with the government and the aboriginal organizations working together to resolve their differences. I think there has to be some mechanism to deal with that, so can the Premier tell me if there is such an appeal process in place where they can go directly to, say, the Premier instead of having to deal with these agencies of the government?

Supplementary To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Antoine.

Further Return To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

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Jim Antoine Nahendeh

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, the honourable Member is asking if there is an avenue to approach this government if there is no success in the approach of the Tl'oondih Healing Centre applying for funding to this government, and if there is no funding available through the regular process, through health and social services, where can

they appeal? I guess the answer is there is no place where we can appeal. The way this government works, each department is funded a certain amount of dollars through the budgeting process and we have only so many dollars to operate on. This is what was in place previous years, and this is the way we are going to continue until the end of the life of this government, is to carry on with the way we have been allocating the budget to each department. The department then decides how to allocate their own budget. This is the route that has been there and we will continue to use it. Thank you.

Further Return To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 313

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Final supplementary, Mr. Krutko.

Supplementary To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

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David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I believe that is exactly the problem with the way the relationship between aboriginal organizations and this government is. They are not recognized on the same footing as a government. We talk about aboriginal groups being recognized as aboriginal governments. I think it is critical they be treated like aboriginal governments, and not treated like every other individual in society. We have to ensure that we make that extra effort to improve the working relationship between this government and aboriginal organizations. We talk about the problems that we have as MLAs dealing with our constituents...

Supplementary To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 313

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Krutko, would you please ask your supplementary.

Supplementary To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

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David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. In regard to my supplementary, I would like to ask the Premier, is there anything happening within this government to find an avenue to improve the working relationship between aboriginal governments and this government so that they are treated differently then they are treated today? I believe we have to find a way to resolve that difference.

Supplementary To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Antoine.

Further Return To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

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Jim Antoine Nahendeh

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I think every time we meet with community leaders, chiefs, regional leaders, and tribal council leaders of the aboriginal people, I think we take one step towards having a better understanding between the Government of the Northwest Territories and the aboriginal leaders.

There is an agenda for the new western territories that we have been pushing for sometime now that clearly lays out what this government is facing within the big picture area of getting governance right. We want to make sure the governance is right there, and we are working on the land claims in the Beaufort Delta. It includes the Gwich'in and Inuvialuit in the Delta. We are dealing with Deline and the Sahtu. We are dealing with the Dogrib on land claims and self-government arrangements, so we are trying to get governance right. Every time we meet with them, for example, we just had a meeting with Grand Chief Joe Rabesca and the chiefs of the Dogrib yesterday to continue a working relationship there. As well, we met with the chiefs when the chiefs had a meeting here. We had a very good meeting and a lot of good questions. We continue to meet with different leaders in the Aboriginal Summit. There is going to be a conference call later on today I will be attending with the Aboriginal Summit leaders.

We are working towards some kind of a political protocol, or a political accord with the aboriginal leaders of the Northwest Territories. There is a plan of having an intergovernmental forum sometime later on in the next few months that will include all of the aboriginal leaders, the government, different business people in the north, and different prominent leaders in the north. Then there is economic strategy that Mr. Kakfwi is responsible for that will include discussion. The Northern Accord or devolution that we have been talking about is part of the Agenda for the New North that has to have partnership arrangements if aboriginal government is going to succeed.

Mr. Speaker, there are lots of avenues in which this government is attempting to communicate or work very closely with the aboriginal leaders. There are differences of opinion in some areas on specific things that are understandable, that is the way things are, but overall, I think there is a very good working relationship and I think what we are doing with the agenda is to lay everything on the table so that everybody knows what it is that we are working with. I think that is the big step that we are taking in trying to have a better working relationship with the aboriginal people in the north. Thank you.

Further Return To Question 114-13(7): Implementation Of Gwich'in Land Claim Agreement
Item 6: Oral Questions
Item 6: Oral Questions

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Mr. Henry.

Question 115-13(7): Funding To Nwtam For 98/99 Fiscal Year
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 313

Seamus Henry Yellowknife South

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. My question is to the Minister responsible for MACA, my honourable colleague, Mr. Steen. Yesterday, Mr. Speaker, in this House in committee of the whole the MACA budget was presented and was passed. There was some information that the Minister's officials provided at that forum and I had the opportunity to check some of those figures and I am a little confused. I was wondering if the Minister could help me with some figures from his budget of last year. I believe it is important when we consider the calls from the teachers and from nurses in all the communities about underfunding and I just want to be sure that the funding is provided on an actual basis. My question to the Minister is, could he provide to me the amount of money that was provided to the NWT Association of Municipalities for the last fiscal year ending March 31st? Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Question 115-13(7): Funding To Nwtam For 98/99 Fiscal Year
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 313

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. The Member for Yellowknife South is seeking information that is in the committee proceedings and I must rule the question out of order since you are seeking information about a proceeding in a committee which has not yet been reported to the House and you did make reference to the committee. Oral questions. Mr. Morin.

Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 313

Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I will have to redirect my question now to the Premier. Mr. Premier, do you have any written instructions, or do you have any mutual agreement with

your Cabinet Ministers that they should be in question period when question period is on? Thank you.

Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 314

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Mr. Antoine.

Return To Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 314

Jim Antoine Nahendeh

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, there is an agreement with the Ministers that they requested to be not in the House at certain times because of certain commitments and there is no written agreement of that sort, but there is an understanding that there has to be a written request that they be in House and that they be excused, so there is an arrangement that we have that will have to be complied with. Thank you.

Return To Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 314

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Oral questions. Question period is over. I will allow you a supplementary, Mr. Morin.

Supplementary To Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 314

Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. My question is to the Premier once again on the issue of Ministers. Does the Premier agree with his Minister of RWED when he states that Members of this House when asking questions are quibbling and it is trivial questions. Does the Premier have the same view, or does the Premier agree with his Minister? I am not asking you for an opinion, I am just asking if you agree with your Minister of RWED. Thank you.

Supplementary To Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 314

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Again, to remind the Members that once you have a preamble, you ask a supplementary on that preamble and in this case it is not. The question was asked and this is a new question that has been asked. Mr. Morin, I believe the question was with regard to the conduct of the Ministers and the new question is, you are asking a question about a Minister's department, the workings of the department. Mr. Morin.

Supplementary To Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 314

Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. On the conduct of the Ministers and whether or not in they are in the House or whether or not they think that the questions of Members of the Legislative Assembly are quibbling and trivial, I would ask the Premier does he agree with his Minister that the questions that we ask as Members are quibbling and trivial? Thank you.

Supplementary To Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 314

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Mr. Antoine.

Further Return To Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 314

Jim Antoine Nahendeh

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, we take the questions of the honourable Members very seriously in this House and we have to conduct ourselves as such and I think that even though I may speak the English language fairly well, it is my second language so quibbling may mean a lot of things, I guess, if you are looking in the dictionary, but I do not think it means trivial. I think the honourable Member reading the Hansard mentioned saying that he was quibbling, and earlier today he mentioned that he meant that he himself was quibbling as well, so it is a mutual quibbling, I guess. He asked if I agree with him that I was quibbling, I have to check what quibbling means, but if it means something trivial then I do not agree with that. I do not think it is trivial. I think it is very serious any time an honourable Member asks their questions to the Cabinet. Thank you.

Further Return To Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Question 116-13(7): Attendance Of Cabinet At Question Period
Item 6: Oral Questions

Page 314

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

To remind the Members, I still have a list of names of Members that wanted to ask questions that were not given the opportunity to ask further questions and it indicates that Members are doing preambles and then another preamble and another preamble. When an Ordinary Member does that it does restrict other Members from that opportunity to ask questions. I would like your cooperation to ensure that you do a preamble as pre-supplementary. Other Members may wish to ask questions and, again, even though we are only half our former size as a group, we still ask a lot of questions and we always end up with a list of Members that did not have the opportunity to ask more questions. Item 7, written questions. Mrs. Groenewegen.

Written Question 1-13(7): Report To Minister Of Public Works And Services On Issues Raised By The Conflict Raised By The Conflict Of Interest Commissioner
Item 7: Written Questions

Page 314

Jane Groenewegen Hay River

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. My written questions are directed to the Minister of Public Works and Services, the Honourable Vince Steen.

1. Who decided on a review of Public Works and Services and when?

2. By what method was the contract for this work awarded?

3. What are the qualifications of the consultant who performed the review?

4. How much did the review cost?

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Written Question 1-13(7): Report To Minister Of Public Works And Services On Issues Raised By The Conflict Raised By The Conflict Of Interest Commissioner
Item 7: Written Questions

Page 314

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Written questions. Item 8, returns to written questions. Item 9, replies to opening address. Item 10, replies to Budget Address. Item 11, petitions. Item 12, reports of standing and special committees. Item 13, reports of committees on the review of bills. Item 14, tabling of documents. Item 15, notices of motion. Item 16, notices of motion for first reading of bills. Item 17, motions. Item 18, first reading of bills. Item 19, second reading of bills. Item 20, consideration in committee of the whole of bills and other matters. Committee Report 1-13(7) and Bill 17, Appropriation Act, 1999-2000, with Mr. Krutko in the chair.

Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 314

The Chair David Krutko

Welcome to committee of the whole. What is the wish of the committee? Mr. Erasmus.

Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 314

Roy Erasmus Yellowknife North

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. What we really want is more money for education, but good luck. Continue with Bill 17 and committee report 1-13(7) and we will do the Housing Corporation and, if time permits, perhaps we will go on to

Justice. Thank you.

Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 315

The Chair David Krutko

Does the committee agree?

Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 315

Some Hon. Members

Agreed.

Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 315

The Chair David Krutko

Thank you. We will take a short break at this time, ten minutes.

--Break.

Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 315

The Chair David Krutko

I would like to call the committee to order. We are dealing with the NWT Housing Corporation. I would like to ask the Minister, Honourable Floyd Roland, if he has any opening comments.

Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 315

Floyd Roland Inuvik

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Mr. Chairman, I am pleased to present to the Legislative Assembly the 1999-2000 Main Estimates for the Northwest Territories Housing Corporation. Before I provide the Legislature with comments specific to the Housing Corporation's Main Estimates, I would like to make a few comments about my new portfolio. I am very pleased to be the Minister responsible for the NWT Housing Corporation because addressing housing needs is extremely important to the residents of the NWT.

Mr. Chairman, as you and all Members of this House are aware, two of the most basic needs for all human beings are food and shelter. It is the second basic need that the Housing Corporation works to provide. The corporation is requesting a total contribution from this government of $43.27 million: $21.64 million for capital programs, and $21.63 million for operations and maintenance. When we add in Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation funding, the corporation will spend over $82 million on housing here in the Northwest Territories.

Mr. Chairman, the 1996 housing needs survey showed that there was a dire need for adequate housing. Many of those in the greatest need are aboriginal families. The total withdrawal of federal funding for new social housing has put a severe strain on the corporation's ability to meet the housing needs of our residents. One of the most important challenges for the NWT, as well as for all of the provinces and territories, will be to work together to ensure that CMHC funding to operate and maintain units stays in the housing system. The long-term sustainability of our social housing stock depends upon it.

By increasing the number of homes and repairing and renovating existing homes, the corporation helps to address other important social problems which children and families face. We all know that for our children to become successful and happy adults, able to lead productive lives, they need a safe, stable and secure environment to grow up in. Providing good housing to our families goes a long way in providing our children with such an environment.

Now that we have made the transition to the new Northwest Territories, the NWT Housing Corporation will now be able to spend all its time developing and implementing housing solutions for the west. I believe, because of this western focus, housing programs can be better targeted. A good example of this has been the Minimum Down Payment Assistance Pilot Program. MDAPP was implemented as a way to stimulate the north's economy and has clearly been a very big boost to the western territory's housing markets.

Mr. Chairman, to further assist the economy of the Northwest Territories, the corporation is working hard to find new markets for northern manufactured products. In Alaska the corporation is providing the building materials, including northern manufactured products and other materials purchased from northern suppliers for at least five homes in Barrow, on the North Slope. The quality of northern products and the corporation's expertise in house design, packaging and shipping, coupled with the low Canadian dollar, gives us an advantage in the Alaskan market. The long-term aim is to sell housing packages to many of the communities in northern Alaska.

The corporation has participated in trade missions to the Russian far east and the People's Republic of China. Mr. Chairman, both the Russians and the Chinese are interested in purchasing housing packages for their remote communities. These housing packages will contain products manufactured here in the NWT or bought through northern suppliers, thus improving the profitability of northern businesses and keeping northerners working. Although the corporation is taking an aggressive approach to marketing northern building products, we also recognize the need to proceed cautiously.

Training Initiatives, providing enhanced training opportunities for employees of local housing organizations and northern students.

Mr. Chairman, the corporation's aggressive approach to human resource development will encompass a minimum of 18 initiatives to be carried out this year. One of these initiatives has been the completion of an employee satisfaction survey, the results of which are being used as a baseline from which to work to improve the corporation's work environment. Finally, Mr. Chairman, I would like to mention one other initiative. The corporation is working cooperatively with the Department of Education, Culture and Employment on integrating the social housing and income support programs. The aim is to ensure both programs work together at the community level to help northern families in need of shelter and basic assistance. I am pleased that preliminary work on this study will be going to Cabinet shortly. I believe this initiative is an excellent example of how separate government agencies can work cooperatively to assist northerners. This concludes my opening remarks and I will be pleased to answer any questions. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 316

The Chair David Krutko

Thank you, Mr. Minister. I will ask the committee responsible if they have any comments. Mr. Henry.

Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 316

Seamus Henry Yellowknife South

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. With your permission I would read the committee's report on the NWT Housing Corporation.

Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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The Chair David Krutko

Please continue.

Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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Seamus Henry Yellowknife South

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. The NWT Housing Corporation works with the local housing authorities and other concerned citizens and non-governmental organizations to achieve acceptable results in the provision of housing in the Northwest Territories. The Housing Corporation aims to ensure there is adequate social housing available for those who need it and that there are affordable housing options available for those who can look after their own needs. The Housing Corporation also works to develop a NWT-based construction and manufacturing base with high aboriginal participation.

The Standing Committee on Social Programs met on November 20, 1998, to review the draft business plans of the Northwest Territories Housing Corporation and again on March 19, 1999, to review the NWT Housing Corporation's draft 1999-2000 Main Estimates. Committee Members were generally satisfied with the business plan of the NWT Housing Corporation. Committee Members realize that the corporation is doing what it can with the reduced federal social housing funding that it receives. Recent initiatives such as the Extended Down Payment Assistance Program are proving valuable in making northerners responsible for their own housing choices. The committee notes a $283,000 reduction in operations and maintenance funding and $125,000 reduction in capital funding in the 1999-2000 draft Main Estimates over the number contained in the 1999-2000 business plans. Under the P3 initiative, the Housing Corporation plans to replace energy inefficient appliances in public housing stock and test other energy- saving systems.

While the committee does look forward to being informed on the result of cost-saving exercises as the grey water recycling system presently being tested in N'dilo, there is some trepidation, on the part of Members, on the introduction of energy-saving appliances and systems at the community level. There is no doubt that the replacement of old energy inefficient appliances would result in savings for the public housing programs administered by the Housing Corporation. However, particularly in the small communities, this could result in the Northwest Territories Power Corporation having to increase the power rates to all residents of the community to meet their necessary revenue requirements. On a positive note, the replacement of older appliances could benefit communities whose power supply infrastructure is operating at near capacity by lowering the demand on the system. This would save the cost of the Power Corporation having to add excess power generating capacity which would be, in any event, passed on to the consumer.

Mr. Chairman, the committee recommends that the Northwest Territories Housing Corporation work in conjunction with the Northwest Territories Power Corporation to ensure that any energy-saving programs under the P3 initiative not have an adverse effect on the power rates for any community. Committee Members are optimistic about the opportunities the Housing Corporation is developing for northern businesses in Alaska. There is a great economic potential for northern businesses and for the generation of more power funding realized through profit. Members were encouraged to hear, during the review of the Main Estimates, that there is a potential for a supply of more housing units than originally envisaged. While committee Members encourage the corporation in developing this curiously untapped Alaskan market, they also urge a degree of scepticism in dealing with any of the former Russian republics to provide housing units due to the possible logistical and financial difficulties.

The committee made note of the ongoing negotiations on the transfer of some housing units to community governments. This is an initiative that may have a positive effect on the ability of smaller communities without a viable rental market to attract and retain health care and educational professionals. The committee encourages the Housing Corporation in further dialogue on this issue. The committee understands and supports the devolving of the tendering process to the local level. However, if the corporation is to achieve its end goal of promoting the development of a viable manufacturing sector, it will be necessary to adopt a proactive approach to ensure that all qualified northern companies are able to bid on projects. Presently the only resource the Housing Corporation has to deal with failure of local organizations responsible for tendering neglecting to ensure northern content is to withhold the funding relating to the portion of the tender under dispute.

The committee recommends that the local contracting authorities performing the tendering function on behalf of the Northwest Territories Housing Corporation be required to file with the corporation a copy of all tendering documents as they are let. The Housing Corporation should then file the tender documents with the NWT Construction Association or other appropriate agencies so that any qualified northern contractor or manufacturer can bid on the tender.

Mr. Chairman, during the present business plan review, the committee noted that the social housing program run by the Northwest Territories Housing Corporation is closely intertwined with the Income Support Program run by the Department of Education, Culture and Employment. Both programs contain provisions that discourage people from working. There is no point for a person on income support and living in social housing paying $32 per month to take a job paying $10 per hour when he or she is no better off because of higher rent and loss of income support. The departments must work together to develop common policies that are not at cross purposes with each other. These policies must also be re-examined in light of division, the realities of life in the future Northwest Territories, the implementation of a new western revised rent scale and the interrelationships between government departments and policies, particularly within the social envelope.

During the business plan review, committee Members were disappointed in the apparent lack of cooperation between the departments; however, during the Main Estimates Review, the committee noted a solid beginning in increased cooperation among the departments involved in delivering programs in the social envelope. It was particularly encouraging to committee Members to hear that an interdepartmental paper, on a combined social housing and income support system had been forwarded to Cabinet for their consideration. The committee looks forward to being kept apprised on the progress made on this important decisive issue in our communities. Committee Members are interested in seeing the final recommendations on the implementation of the rent scale as it applies to the new Northwest Territories and look forward to providing their input.

Committee Members were also concerned that the providing of so-called free social housing to seniors is not in the best interest of the corporation. Committee Members have heard of cases where seniors have sold their own home or given them to children and moved into social housing. Many seniors do have a sufficient income to pay for at least part of costs associated with their social housing units. The money could be used to subsidize seniors who do not have the wherewithal to pay for housing and still allow them to maintain their independence. It may be necessary to attach a means test to the provision of social housing to seniors.

Mr. Chairman, the committee recommends that the Housing Corporation develop a revised rent scale that takes into account western realities and implement it as soon as possible. The committee recommends that the deputy ministers responsible for the departments in the social envelope work together in greater cooperation in developing programming and policies that meet the needs of northerners and accomplish the government's stated goals.

Program Survey of Local Housing Authorities. The committee wishes to encourage the Northwest Territories Housing Corporation in its desire to increase the level of cooperation between the headquarters function and the local housing authorities. The program survey of the local housing authorities to gauge corporation effectiveness is a positive step in developing programming and services at the headquarters level that respond to the needs of these local housing authorities.

Reduced Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation Funding. Committee Members are well aware that the current level of CMHC funding will be sunset on a reduced sliding scale over the next 29 years. Members of the committee share the Minister's concern that this will have an extremely detrimental effect on the ability of the corporation to deliver new public housing and to maintain the existing housing stocks. Therefore, Mr. Chairman, the committee strongly recommends the Minister's continued cooperation with the other Canadian jurisdictions that were also adversely affected by the federal government's withdrawal from the provision of funding for public housing.

Committee Members also share the Minister's concern that because the Government of the Northwest Territories assumed the responsibility for aboriginal housing in the Northwest Territories, the NWT is not eligible for any federal housing funding that targets treaty aboriginal people. Therefore, Mr. Chairman, the committee recommends that the Minister continue to lobby his federal counterparts to ensure that the Northwest Territories receives a fair share of housing funding that targets aboriginal housing.

Informatics and Human Resource Plans. Committee Members were disappointed in the lack of detail in the Housing Corporation Informatics and Human Resource Plans as contained in the business plan. However, Members could appreciate the difficulties the corporation was having in attracting a computer systems manager given the demand for qualified computer professionals. The committee compliments the Northwest Territories Housing Corporation in its apparent detailed response to these concerns. The committee looks forward to discussing these issues further once Members have had a chance to analyze the information provided by the corporation.

Pilings in Inuvik. During its review of the business plan, committee Members expressed their concerns with the steps that the Housing Corporation was taking in dealing with the rotting piling issue in Inuvik. The committee was pleased to see that by the time of the review of the Main Estimates, the Housing Corporation was awaiting test results on its units' pilings. Members were also pleased to note in the corporation's response to the committee's concerns that extra money was identified for the Inuvik Housing Authority to deal with the rotting piling issue and that the corporation is committed to working with all adversely affected homeowners. The committee looks forward to the results of the tests and to the formulation of the long-term strategy to deal with the rotting piling issue.

Rent Supplement Program. During its review of the business plan, committee Members expressed concerns about how this program operated. Since the money used to support this program is hidden in the operations and maintenance costs it is impossible for the committee to know what the actual cost to the corporation is for the Rent Supplement Program. Prior to the review of the Main Estimates, the Housing Corporation did provide the committee with details on the Rent Supplement Program and which communities had units under the program. Mr. Chairman, that concludes the committee's report on the NWT Housing Corporation. There are some motions that, with your indulgence, I would like to deal with.

Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 317

The Chair David Krutko

Thank you, Mr. Henry. I believe you have some motions. Proceed, Mr. Henry.

Committee Motion 3-13(7): Effects On Power Rates (nwthc)
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 318

Seamus Henry Yellowknife South

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Mr. Chairman, the first motion, I move that this committee recommends that the Northwest Territories Housing Corporation work in conjunction with the Northwest Territories Power Corporation to ensure that any energy-saving programs under the P3 initiative not have an adverse effect on the power rates for any community. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Committee Motion 3-13(7): Effects On Power Rates (nwthc)
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 318

The Chair David Krutko

Thank you, Mr. Henry. The motion is in order. To the motion. Question has been called. All those in favour? All those opposed? The motion is carried. Mr. Henry.

Committee Motion 4-13(7): Tendering To Be Performed By Local Contract Authorities (nwthc)
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 318

Seamus Henry Yellowknife South

Mr. Chairman, the second committee motion, I move that the committee recommends that the local contracting authorities performing the tendering functions on behalf of the Northwest Territories Housing Corporation be required to file, with the corporation, a copy of all tendering documents as they are let. The Housing Corporation should then file the tendering documents with the NWT Construction Association or other appropriate agencies so that any qualified northern contractor or manufacturer can bid on the tender. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Committee Motion 4-13(7): Tendering To Be Performed By Local Contract Authorities (nwthc)
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 318

The Chair David Krutko

Thank you, Mr. Henry. Motion is in order. To the motion. Question has been called. All those in favour? All those opposed? One against. Motion is carried. Mr. Henry.

Committee Motion 5-13(7): Development Of Revised Rent Scale (nwthc)
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

April 23rd, 1999

Page 318

Seamus Henry Yellowknife South

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. The third motion of the committee is, I move that this committee recommends that the Housing Corporation develop a revised rent scale that takes into account western realities and implement it as soon as possible. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Committee Motion 5-13(7): Development Of Revised Rent Scale (nwthc)
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 318

The Chair David Krutko

Thank you, Mr. Henry. Motion is in order. To the motion. Mr. Morin.

Committee Motion 5-13(7): Development Of Revised Rent Scale (nwthc)
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Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. The NWT Housing Corporation had two sets of rent scales, one for on-highway, one for off-highway. They had these rent scales in place for many years. I believe it is in the early 80's that people in the Western Arctic were paying quite a bit higher rent than the people in the Eastern Arctic. That unbalance continued for well over ten years. People in the west paid far more rent than the people in the east making the same amount of money. I guess I need clarification from the Member when he says, develop a revised rent scale that takes into account western realities and implementing them as soon as possible. I would hope that no Member is looking at just an in-house review of rent scales and implementing it without proper consultation with housing authorities, proper consultation with the people in the western Arctic that live in these houses.

I know that previous Ministers of the Housing Corporations spent millions of dollars revising rent scales and consulting. Is that where we are we going to spend the money, or are we going to spend the money building more houses that are desperately needed? I, myself, do not see a big problem with the rent scale right now. It is tied to earnings, there are places in there where students get breaks, elders do not pay rent, and it is also set up to encourage people to move into their own housing and there are programs to assist them to do that. I do not understand or know where this motion is coming from because it could mean a lot of work for the Housing Corporation's staff that could be used somewhere else better. Mr. Chairman, I do not know where I ask for clarity of what this motion means, or who I ask?

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The Chair David Krutko

Thank you, Mr. Morin. Can someone from the committee speak to the motion? Mr. Erasmus.

Committee Motion 5-13(7): Development Of Revised Rent Scale (nwthc)
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Roy Erasmus Yellowknife North

Mr. Chairman, it is precisely because of what Mr. Morin is speaking about that there are on-highway communities, off-highway communities, and it seemed as though the east was way behind the west in paying rents and the rest of that, that we wanted to review this so that it accurately reflects the situation which is only in the west and in which we no longer have to consider the eastern situation. Also, there are different tenants in the units now that a lot of people have moved out and there are different tenants in a lot of areas. I do not think that we wanted the Housing Corporation to just implement it on its own. There has to be some consultation and it has to be brought back to the committee as well. Thank you.

Committee Motion 5-13(7): Development Of Revised Rent Scale (nwthc)
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The Chair David Krutko

Thank you, Mr. Erasmus. To the motion. Mr. Morin.

Committee Motion 5-13(7): Development Of Revised Rent Scale (nwthc)
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Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. That is good to hear that there should be consultation. I can understand why this motion is put forward then. But also the motion should be very clear and leave no interpretation to the civil service that they are to develop a revised rent scale that takes into account western realities and then implement it. That is what this motion says. A possible amendment to this would be that they would develop, in consultation with the communities and the housing authorities, a revised rent scale that takes into account the western realities and bring it back to the committee for a review before implementing it as soon as possible.

Committee Motion 5-13(7): Development Of Revised Rent Scale (nwthc)
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The Chair David Krutko

Thank you. Mr. Morin, are you proposing an amendment to this motion?

Committee Motion 5-13(7): Development Of Revised Rent Scale (nwthc)
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Yes.

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The Chair David Krutko

Thank you, Mr. Morin. We will have to make a copy of the motion and distribute it. We will take a short recess to develop the motion to amend. Thank you.

--Break

Committee Motion 5-13(7): Development Of Revised Rent Scale (nwthc)
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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The Chair David Krutko

I would like to call the committee back to order. We are dealing with committee motion 5-13(7). I will ask for the amendment to the motion. Mr. Morin, for the record, could you read your motion to amend.

Committee Motion 5-13(7): Development Of Revised Rent Scale (nwthc)
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Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I move that committee motion 5-13(7) be amended by adding the following after the words "as soon as possible":

And further that the revised rent scale be developed in consultation with communities and local housing authorities,

And further that the revised rent scale be brought back to the committee for its review at the earliest opportunity.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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The Chair David Krutko

Thank you, Mr. Morin. The motion to amend is in order. To the motion. Mr. Morin.

Committee Motion 5-13(7): Development Of Revised Rent Scale (nwthc)
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Question.

Committee Motion 5-13(7): Development Of Revised Rent Scale (nwthc)
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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The Chair David Krutko

Question has been called. All those in favour? All those opposed? The motion is carried. To committee motion 5-13(7) as amended. Question has been called. All those in favour? All those opposed? The motion is carried. Mr. Morin.

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Don Morin Tu Nedhe

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I move that we report progress.

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Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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The Chair David Krutko

There is a motion on the floor to report progress. The motion is not debatable. To the motion. All those in favour? All those opposed? The motion is carried. I will now rise and report progress.

Committee Motion 5-13(7): Development Of Revised Rent Scale (nwthc)
Item 20: Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

The House will come back to order. We are on item 21, report of committee of the whole. Mr. Krutko.

Item 21: Report Of Committee Of The Whole
Item 21: Report Of Committee Of The Whole

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David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, your committee has been considering Bill 17, Appropriation Act, 1999-2000, and committee report 1-13(7) and would like to report progress with three motions being adopted. Mr. Speaker, I move that the report of the committee of the whole be concurred with.

Item 21: Report Of Committee Of The Whole
Item 21: Report Of Committee Of The Whole

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Seconded by Mr. Erasmus. The motion is in order. To the motion. May I have some order in the House, please. Question has been called. All those in favour? All those opposed? The motion is carried. Item 22, third reading of bills. Item 23, orders of the day. Mr. Clerk.

Item 23: Orders Of The Day
Item 23: Orders Of The Day

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Deputy Clerk Mr. Schauerte

Mr. Speaker, meetings of the Special Committee on Western Identity at 2:00 p.m. Meetings for Monday, April 26, 1999, at 9:30 a.m., the Standing Committee on Government Operations and at 11:30 a.m., the Management and Services Board.

Orders of the day for Monday, April 26, 1999:

1. Prayer

2. Ministers' Statements

3. Members' Statements

4. Returns to Oral Questions

5. Recognition of Visitors in the Gallery

6. Oral Questions

7. Written Questions

8. Returns to Written Questions

9. Replies to Opening Address

10. Replies to Budget Address

11. Petitions

12. Reports of Standing and Special Committees

13. Reports of Committees on the Review of Bills

14. Tabling of Documents

15. Notices of Motion

16. Notices of Motion for First Reading of Bills

17. Motions

18. First Reading of Bills

- Bill 18, Loan Authorization Act, 1999-2000

19. Second Reading of Bills

20. Consideration in Committee of the Whole of Bills and Other Matters

- Bill 17, Appropriation Act, 1999-2000

- Committee Report 1-13(7)

21. Report of Committee of the Whole

22. Third Reading of Bills

23. Orders of the Day

Item 23: Orders Of The Day
Item 23: Orders Of The Day

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The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. This House stands adjourned to Monday, April 26, 1999, at 1:30 p.m.

--ADJOURNMENT