This is page numbers 73 - 92 of the Hansard for the 13th Assembly, 8th 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 assembly.

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Member's Statement 19-13(8): Appreciation Of Constituents, Colleagues And Staff
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 76

Jake Ootes Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Thank you, colleagues. As I said, I think the media, those who attend our Sessions here, should be complimented and patted on the back because at times I am sure I have had occasion where my eyes shut and I think if you are sitting in a booth listening to some of you guys, now I may be a little different, but some of you guys and ladies have been somewhat on the, I will not say the word. Anyway, I want to thank them. The people that I really want to thank, Mr. Speaker, are my constituents. They have been giving me, over the past four years, good feedback. They have been proactive whenever they felt that there was an issue that I should be concerned with. Additionally, they have come to me with difficulties from time to time and I hope over the past four years I have been able to help those constituents resolve some of their problems, may they have been on a personal problem or as a collective group society type of problem. To me it is the constituents that have been of great importance to, as they are to all of our Members, they are the people that we represent and I know that from what I have seen in this legislature, our Members have been very responsive in all cases, that seems to be the priority and that is the way it should be. Those are the people that put us in here and they are the ones we should thank for putting us in here and work for. Mr. Speaker, I will end on that note and I want to thank the indulgence of my colleagues for giving me the extra time to speak this morning. I thank everybody, it has been a great pleasure to work with all of you and with the Cabinet Members. I personally am of the opinion we have a very good Cabinet and I feel that they do a good job. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

--Applause

Member's Statement 19-13(8): Appreciation Of Constituents, Colleagues And Staff
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 76

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Members' statements. Mr. Krutko.

Member's Statement 20-13(8): Ensuring Equity And Fairness In All Constituencies
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 76

David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, since this is our last day in the 13th Assembly I would like to remind the government and the bureaucracy at who to represent. I think it is important that this government realizes that things are

different in the smaller communities, in the smaller ridings and also geographically. The riding I represent is in the far west corner of the new Western Territory. We are still part of the new Western Territory. I would like to ensure that we continue to be represented fully, fairly and also be given the opportunities that every riding and every region in the new Western Territory receives. I am talking about economic and social opportunities. We now have the opportunity on our doorstep in regard to the oil and gas industry with the gas pipeline, which is just being unveiled today in Inuvik.

I believe we also have to strive to ensure that we better the lives of all the people in the new Western Territory and expand our horizon of developing our economic opportunities, developments in the tourism sector, commercial sector in regard to the fishing industry and also the logging industry. It is more important than ever that we improve the lives of the people we represent as to initiatives that come from the people we represent, not from the bureaucracy down, but from the people up.

I find it awfully difficult being here in the last four years where issues seem to take so long to develop. We raise issues time and time again with the understanding that it is a simple process, but yet it takes months and months, if not years, for a lot of these initiatives to get off the ground. I guess you have to start somewhere.

In regard to the issues I am talking about is the water concern in Fort McPherson and also giving the regions more autonomy in developing the regional institutions such as correction facilities, on the land programs in regard to alcohol and drug programs, and also allow the communities to have the resources like you have in any large regional centre. We cannot nickel and dime the resource people we have in our communities where we pay them less than people doing the same job in other government sectors either in Yellowknife or in the other regional centres. Mr. Speaker, I seek unanimous consent to continue my statement.

Member's Statement 20-13(8): Ensuring Equity And Fairness In All Constituencies
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 77

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

The Member for Mackenzie Delta is seeking unanimous consent to conclude his statement. Do we have any nays? There are no nays. Mr. Krutko, you have unanimous consent.

Member's Statement 20-13(8): Ensuring Equity And Fairness In All Constituencies
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 77

David Krutko Mackenzie Delta

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Thank you, colleagues. I, for one, feel that we have to take initiatives of ensuring that we do have a check list where we can see exactly where the money is being spent, how it is being impacted on communities. Is it meeting the goals that this government set? I have argued many times in this House about negotiated contracts. The reason I support negotiated contracts is because I see that as a process that ensures the benefits to communities for jobs, for being able to develop their local industries and also being able to develop the local economy of those particular communities and regions. Yet we have policies in place in this government where I feel that is lacking in other areas. I think it is essential that this government ensures that the benefits flow directly to the people in the communities firstly and secondly, that we ensure that it cuts the social dependency on this government in our local communities. At the appropriate time, Mr. Speaker, I will be asking the Premier questions on this matter.

--Applause

Member's Statement 20-13(8): Ensuring Equity And Fairness In All Constituencies
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 77

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Members' statements. Mr. Erasmus.

Member's Statement 21-13(8): Concerns Of Giant Mine Employees
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 77

Roy Erasmus Yellowknife North

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, today in my last Member's statement I will be speaking about the sale of Giant Mine and the federal government living up to its responsibility to employees there. Mr. Speaker, as we all know Miramar Con Mine has proposed to buy this mine from the receiver Price Waterhouse Coopers. One of Miramar's conditions is that the employees do not come with the mine. Ordinarily under Canadian law, when you sell a company the employees go with it and so do the obligations that are owed to the old employees, meaning pensions and severance pay and those types of things. Miramar does not want the employees. Like any good business move they would like to cut their costs when they are purchasing this business. Unfortunately, in this instance, if this happens it will mean that the employees are the ones that are getting the shaft, so to speak. Most of them will lose their jobs and all of them will lose their pensions and severance pay if things work out the way the mine wants. Like I say, usually when you a buy a company all of their obligations come with it. Employees, employees pension and their severance pay. But if the receivers lay them off, then the employees simply become creditors to Giant Mine. Meaning that Giant Mine owes them money.

Mr. Speaker, there are two kinds of creditors. Secured creditors and unsecured creditors. Secured creditors are companies that have signed documents indicating that they will receive collateral if they do not receive the money that is owed to them. Unsecured creditors are also owed money, but they have not been smart enough or in a position to get the signed documents saying that they will receive something.

What does this mean? It means that once Giant Mine is sold, the receiver pays the secure creditors first. This means that the workers get what is left after the secured creditors, who are usually people like banks and other loan companies, the workers will get what is left after that. This means that they will get very, very little, if anything, of what is owed to them. Mr. Speaker, I seek unanimous consent to conclude my statement.

Member's Statement 21-13(8): Concerns Of Giant Mine Employees
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 77

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

The Member for Yellowknife North is seeking unanimous consent to conclude his statement. Do we have any nays? There are no nays. Mr. Erasmus, you have unanimous consent.

Member's Statement 21-13(8): Concerns Of Giant Mine Employees
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 77

Roy Erasmus Yellowknife North

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Thank you colleagues. Mr. Speaker, as I was saying, because of the way the system works this likely means that the employees will get very little, if anything, of what is owed to them for their pensions and severance pay. This whole area is governed by the federal government, under the Canadian Labour Code and the Bankruptcy Act. Mr. Speaker, to me and to anybody that I have spoken to, it is unconscionable that the federal government can allow this. It is simple, all they have to do is put it into their act, that workers are the first secured creditors. I have to add, this is not the first time that this has happened. Similar situations have occurred across Canada. The worker is the person that always gets the shaft. It is time, Mr. Speaker, that the federal government lives up to its obligations. In this instance it is to

protect the workers both legally and financially. The federal government should step in and ensure that the miners receive what is owed to them and secondly, Mr. Speaker, the federal government has to change their act so that all employees become first secured creditors in any bankruptcy. Thank you.

--Applause

Member's Statement 21-13(8): Concerns Of Giant Mine Employees
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 78

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Members' statements. Mr. Miltenberger.

Member's Statement 22-13(8): Reflections On The 13th Legislative Assembly
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 78

Michael Miltenberger Thebacha

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. In this the last day of the last Session of the 13th Assembly, I as well would like to make some brief final comments and as I know there are going to be a number of replies to the opening address. Mr. Speaker, I do not think anybody can deny that the 13th Assembly was an historic one. We were at the end of an era and we were involved in the start of a new one. We now have two territories. We dealt with a very difficult economic situation and I think when you get away from the hubbub of the Assembly and you look back, you can reflect on things. As my colleague, Mr. Roland, said yesterday we did good work, but we also did necessary work. We passed some very important legislation. We dealt with very difficult financial times and we navigated through the very tricky waters leading to division and beyond. Through it all, by practising the politics of co-operation we were able to succeed to the level that we did. I am very, very optimistic as MLA for Thebacha and a resident of the Northwest Territories about our future. We sit on a tremendous storehouse of resources, we have huge potential and I am confident that if we get our politics right that we should prosper like no other jurisdiction in Canada.

It has been, throughout the last four years, an honour and privilege to serve with all my colleagues through all the interesting times that we have had. For those who are running for re-election, myself included, I wish you all the best. For those that are going to go on to other endeavours, of course, good health and continued success.

No matter what happens, Mr. Speaker, for myself, I also want to acknowledge the support, and as we work here as politicians, the staff have a tremendous role to play, both in this House and in the offices in departments of government. To them I give a heartfelt thanks as well. Mr. Speaker, no matter where I go from here on in, no matter what happens to me, I will always be able to say with pride that I was a Member of the 13th Legislative Assembly. Thank you.

--Applause

Member's Statement 22-13(8): Reflections On The 13th Legislative Assembly
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 78

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Members' statements. Mr. Antoine.

Member's Statement 23-13(8): Reflections On The 13th Legislative Assembly
Item 3: Members' Statements

September 10th, 1999

Page 78

Jim Antoine Nahendeh

Mahsi, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you. Since this is the last day of the sitting of the 13th Assembly, I just wanted to say that over the last four years it has certainly been a challenge for all of us here in the Legislative Assembly. As the MLA for the Nahendeh constituency, I have had the honour to represent the people in the six communities of Fort Simpson, Fort Liard, Jean Marie River, Trout Lake, Nahanni Butte and Wrigley for the last eight years now, two terms. We have gone through a tremendous historical and memorable four years here in this Legislative Assembly. We have had difference of opinions on certain issues, but overall we have been able to work together to try to meet head-on with the tremendous challenges that were ahead of us. Even though the media has a tendency of looking at things in a very negative way, we have done a lot of good things. We have done a lot of good things for the people in the North and that is what we all came here for. I think we should be proud that we have served the last four years together and I just wanted to say mahsi to all the MLAs here and to the people in my constituency for giving me this honour of representing them in this House. Mahsi.

--Applause

Member's Statement 23-13(8): Reflections On The 13th Legislative Assembly
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 78

The Speaker Samuel Gargan

Thank you. Members' statements. Mr. Rabesca.

Member's Statement 24-13(8): Appreciation To Colleagues And Staff
Item 3: Members' Statements

Page 78

James Rabesca North Slave

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to give my colleagues a fond farewell. Over the years we have had many battles as well as many good times that, I for one, will remember for a long, long time. This has been a very interesting Assembly, and as I look around at all of you I know you have all grown considerably over the last four years.

I remember travelling with my friend and colleague, Mr. John Ningark, as I call him, brother John. His humour and good nature was always welcome. I have many memories of those years. I thank you all for the privilege of meeting and sharing our lives together. In a way it is sad for us today, but our lives go on and most of us will be hitting the campaign trail, while others will contemplate what the next move will be for them and what it will mean for their future. For myself, I will once again hit the campaign trail and with some good luck and support, I will once again be back here to work for our residents

At this time, Mr. Speaker, I would like to wish my colleagues that will also be going to re-election, good luck. For those that have decided to venture elsewhere in their lives, I wish you all the best in your private lives wherever they may lead you. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

--Applause