Legislative Assembly photo

Roles

Elsewhere

Last in the Legislative Assembly November 2003, as MLA for Kam Lake

Won his last election, in 1999, with 80% of the vote.

Statements in the House

NWT Housing Corporation March 11th, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Yes, indeed, the Member is quite correct in his concerns. There are two different types of liability, I assume. When the Pages are travelling with the honourable Member, they're covered to the same extent, I've been informed, as duty travel if they're assigned to be here for that particular purpose. If they're on their own, they're on their own. That's a different matter, if they come on their own. But if they're coming with a Member and they're the responsibility of the Member, they would be covered under duty travel.

NWT Housing Corporation March 11th, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. That's indeed a very good comment, good question on the honourable bear that is here. This bear has a long, long history for this Assembly. This bear was donated by one of the honourable Members -- I think Mr. Pudluk -- some time ago. He used to be Deputy Speaker and a long-serving Member, the Dean of the House for a while. Indeed it has seen an awful lot, and it's felt an awful lot as well. It's an attraction for young people. Indeed it is losing its hair, like some of the honourable Members.

---Laughter

As soon as the Assembly is over, Mr. Chairman, this bear is going to be taken by a taxidermist company here in town and properly stabilized and restored to its dignity. Mr. Speaker would also welcome any other suggestions for a display of some of our history, some of our historical connection to the land. A suggestion has been for the honourable Member for Nunakput to donate to this House a muskox carpet, perhaps, or a bison from Thebacha or the Deh Cho that would symbolize the connection to the land. But I can assure the honourable Members that when they return in the June session not only will they see new uniforms on the Pages, but a rejuvenated bear.

NWT Housing Corporation March 11th, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. No, we haven't yet finalized the decision. We're having some difficulty in determining the interpretation of non-partisan, which is causing the most concern. We're trying to come up with a proper interpretation of that term.

NWT Housing Corporation March 11th, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Yes, I am aware of the concerns of the member. Part of the decision to make the decision that we did was based on concerns by committee chair. At the time, the committee was reviewing a particular bill and it was too close to the meetings of the committee and the group that was going to be meeting. Board of Management is always concerned with the non-partisan use of the Great Hall. We have certain restrictions as far as picket signs and protests, where there are concerns, so we enforce that. We're also concerned when groups want to deal with certain issues that are perhaps to be confused with committee meetings that are taking place at approximately the same time on the same subject, and this was part of it. The policy hasn't been developed yet that will totally address all of the concerns of the public. I think there has to be some latitude for the board to make certain decisions on particular use. So that's where it stands.

NWT Housing Corporation March 11th, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I'm sure that we will, in the future, meet even more of the honourable Member's expectations. I think that from where I'm sitting, I'm looking at an Inuvialuit carving sitting over the top of the Speaker's chair. There's the reflection of the talent and work that is in our Mace here. If you look out at the back of the hall here, you'll see an enormous sculpture that was created by Inuvialuit carvers. I think that his concerns are probably very well represented in this building as it is, and we hope to work to achieve even more in the future, with his input.

NWT Housing Corporation March 11th, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Again I'm not sure how we could guarantee each member equality in reflection of the particular culture. But when we did put the request for proposals out, people of the North, from Thebacha to Nunakput, had an opportunity to submit proposals. I don't recall whether or not we got any from that area. We had to move on and we did, and I'm sure that the artists will endeavour to reflect the true North in their work. We also have, and will have in the next little while here, people speaking to Members about what they would like to see in the Assembly. I, for one, would like to see some plan come up that will capture the whole of the North in a very few square feet within this building, of different areas or different regions and different traditions, and capture the spirit of the North. I think we've done a magnificent job already -- we try hard -- and I think that each member should be looking forward to speaking to that group that are tasked to come up with a plan for the cultural enhancement of the building.

NWT Housing Corporation March 11th, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. The uniforms are part of what we would like to see the Legislative Assembly reflect eventually. There was a request for proposals sent out, and the three people involved here were the ones who submitted to the team the best proposal, and those are the ones who they selected. A lot of people had an opportunity to put forward proposals, and those were the ones we thought were the best and we went with. I'm hoping that when we do see the end result that they will reflect the Inuvialuit culture, as they would the Sahtu or the Metis or the Dogrib or the Gwich'in, and we could go on. I don't know if we can cover everything, but we certainly will give it a try.

NWT Housing Corporation March 11th, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I think over the years we've seen various changes in the uniforms from the Pages. We've tried at different times to reflect what is now two territories -- Nunavut and the Northwest Territories -- and some of the uniforms the honourable Member will remember, there were sealskins with beads, and there were vests. We've tasked a group of northern artists to come up with ideas, and come up with a design for reflecting the northern cultures. Ms. Marie is well-known, as is Darcy Moses and Ms. Fraser, and the Members will, I think, be pleased when they do see them. I'm not able to show you at the moment or describe what they are at the moment, but I think that the selection will meet with the approval of the members.

NWT Housing Corporation March 11th, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I am afraid I can't comment too much on the honourable Member's concerns. If he wishes, he may take those concerns to the Board of Management and thee board will review the suggestions. The board and the Speaker certainly feel that we have a good program, and we'd like to continue this. If there are ways of improving it, we'd be glad to do that. But there are certain liabilities, there are certain responsibilities I'm sure that the honourable Members will agree that we cannot take on and should not take on. I'll leave it to the honourable Members to make that decision.

NWT Housing Corporation March 11th, 2003

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. The Member is correct in some parts of his comments here. The students that are serving as Pages here from across the Territories are examples to the rest of Canada. They are the youngest Pages, probably, in the Commonwealth if I dare go far so far as to say that. They are truly an example, a good example and truly they do aspire to other things. I think that the Member would be very, very proud of his students if he were to take responsibility and bring them in. Already, we have had five different Members bringing in students under the criteria that we've used. The board has gone a long way already to meet Members requirements for Pages and it is a system that I am very proud to support, but I don't think that the Members would want this Legislative Assembly to become ultimately responsible for babysitting students. The Members themselves, should take on that responsibility and be proud of getting their kids in here, and I think the community would applaud the Member for taking that kind of responsibility, and parents would feel secure in letting them stay with the Member, rather than in a hotel somewhere under the supervision of the Speaker or his staff.