Legislative Assembly photo

Roles

Elsewhere

Last in the Legislative Assembly November 2003, as MLA for Sahtu

Won his last election, in 1999, with 61% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Question 370-14(6): Husky Trailer Park Lot Subsidies October 3rd, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, it is understood that we are close to elections, there are always issues about the amount of discretion Ministers have but it is provided for in our legislation or regulations. From time to time, these issues arise and it is always important to us, I think, as a government to make sure that we have procedures and policies and guidelines to direct the actions and missions taken by department officials and, as much as possible, we should strive to make sure Ministerial discretion is not used for guidelines and suffice. We will address that and ensure that it does not happen again. Thank you.

Question 370-14(6): Husky Trailer Park Lot Subsidies October 3rd, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, the Housing Minister has acted according to existing rules and procedures. The issue for us has been around the amount of discretion that is granted to a Minister under the regulations, and we had a discussion amongst ourselves as Ministers and we have agreed we will review these rules and procedures to determine whether or not the present amount of discretion granted to a Minister should be addressed and tightened up. Appropriate action would be taken in the future to ensure that there will be no question as to whether a Minister has acted appropriately or not. That is the action we are taking. We believe the issue was raised, Members raised the concern and it will be addressed. Thank you.

Question 370-14(6): Husky Trailer Park Lot Subsidies October 3rd, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, the issue that was raised has been discussed with the Minister, yes.

Minister's Statement 88-14(6): Minister Absent From The House October 3rd, 2003

Mr. Speaker, I wish to advise Members that the Honourable Jake Ootes will be absent from the House today to attend to a personal matter. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Member's Statement 86-14(6): Mourning The Loss Of Canadian Soldiers October 3rd, 2003

Mr. Speaker, Members, on Thursday morning, two Canadian soldiers died when their jeep hit a land mine in Kabul, Afghanistan. The soldiers were part of Canada's peacekeeping mission in that country.

Gone are Sergeant Robert Alan Short and Corporal Robbie Christopher Beerenfenger.

We mourn the loss of these two brave young Canadians serving our country to bring peace to the world. We grieve for their families, friends and comrades. In recognition of their lives and the cause of peace which they served, I ask for a moment of silence.

Item 2: Ministers' Statements October 3rd, 2003

May I request permission to go ahead with an emergency statement?

Question 365-14(6): Community Involvement In Devolution Negotiations October 2nd, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. The municipalities had asked for some resources to allow for consultation and to keep themselves better informed, as well as to create a better dialogue and relationship with us. I think the Minister of Municipal and Community Affairs has agreed to allocate some resources for that purpose. As far as being kept up to date on the developments of any of the devolution talks, I would have to refer that to the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs, Mr. Antoine, who is more current on the status of those talks and why these municipalities may feel they are not being kept up to date. Thank you.

Question 365-14(6): Community Involvement In Devolution Negotiations October 2nd, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, this is a question that we addressed at the beginning of the life of this Assembly. It was an agreement with the federal government, the aboriginal governments and the Government of the Northwest Territories that we would establish a forum to begin discussions with the purpose of advancing, in real terms, economic development such as the pipeline, but as well devolution and revenue-sharing talks. It would be a government-to-government-to-government basis. It was discussed at the time. The federal government, the aboriginal governments and our government agreed there would be three governments involved in the discussions. We would see that the municipal governments, which are creatures of the territorial government, we would ensure that they would be involved and made aware of the discussions and the issues that were addressed. We will find some way to extend to them some involvement, but not direct involvement. That was what the agreement was. Thank you.

Question 358-14(6): Decentralization Of GNWT Positions October 2nd, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, we have a little over a week left to do some work together. We have issues regarding some legislation that we've committed to dealing with. We have issues like the business incentive policy that will require attention. There is proposed legislation, such as the Tlicho agreement, that should be dealt with by this legislature. So as far as my capacity to give such direction, it's rather limited. If it's something we wanted to do, it's something we should have done in January 2000 or even in the first year, but the Member should be assured that while we are not talking numbers, there is the need for a political will by the next legislature to say there is a regional government emerging in the Mackenzie Delta, the Tlicho have set up a regional government; those have to be reckoned with.

The Government of the Northwest Territories provides budgets, provides legislation, and staff to provide the services. They will have to address these emerging institutions and decide either to be dragged kicking and screaming into the future without really knowing where they are heading or to take leadership and say here is where we are going to be in 15 years.

There are regional institutions coming up, there are aboriginal governments coming up, as far as legislative power, legislative process, the allocation of resources, budgeting. Here is how we have to provide leadership in order to keep everything happening and everybody working together in a way that brings benefits to everybody. That is going to be a huge question for the next legislature. I look forward to seeing them deal with it. Thank you.

Question 358-14(6): Decentralization Of GNWT Positions October 2nd, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, the next legislature will, I am sure, entertain ideas like this. We have the transitional planning process that is being prepared now for the next legislature. Some suggestions on what we need to do to recognize if the political aspect of the Northwest Territories is changing. The Government of the Northwest Territories, as it was and the way it still appears to be, is possibly no longer viable in the sense that we are having emerging regional entities that also want to deliver programs and services and the next legislature may find the political will to embrace these regional governments that are aboriginal public institutions that are being created or in the making. If such is the case, then part of the planning documents entertain the suggestion that we may want to take some of the resources presently allocated at the Yellowknife headquarters level and reprofile or reallocate those to support these regional institutions and governments, so they can deliver programs and services. There is some planning going on to meet that if the next legislature should want to jump on that with both feet, eyes wide open. Thank you.