End of session shenanigans

MP column

For as long as I have been an MP, the end of the Parliamentary session before the summer recess has always been deemed the “silly season.”

After being in Ottawa for a prolonged period of time, MPs are always anxious to get back to their ridings to enjoy barbecues, parades and other community events. Given a federal election is on the horizon, more so than ever MPs are eager to connect with constituents.

Before we can go home however, the government is determined to ram legislation through the House of Commons at a dangerous pace that leaves little to no time to properly debate.

Bill C-69 – the Impact Assessment Act proposes to remove the approval for pipelines and nuclear facilities from the National Energy Board and the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission.

The new Impact Assessment Agency that reports to the Minister of the Environment will be responsible for pipeline approvals. The imposition of this new agency and the new environmental assessment measures on Canada’s resource sector has provoked strong opposition.

Conservative Senators, after conducting numerous hearings, proposed a series of amendments to Bill C-69 that were based on stakeholder feedback and resistance.

When the legislation went back to the House of Commons, it took half an hour to read all the amendments. After only one hour of debate, the government gave notice they would shut down debate and rejected the majority of the amendments, even in the face of strong support from a number of premiers for these changes.

The premiers of Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, New Brunswick and Northwest Territories wrote an urgent letter to the Prime Minister asking him to accept the amendments or face the very real threat of a national unity crisis.

The Prime Minister’s complete disregard for the democratically elected premiers of 59 per cent of Canada’s population and the other three provinces who raised serious concerns with Bill C-59, demonstrates arrogance and poor leadership.

Furthermore, it is proof he plans to “phase-out” Canada’s oilsands.

We are strongly opposed to the open-ended timelines for pipeline approvals, the increased potential for political interference in the review process, and the vague project criteria that will allow anti-resource activists to significantly delay approved projects in courts.

This Act was not the only piece of legislation rushed through Parliament. Time allocation was moved on Bill C-68 -An Act to Amend the Fisheries Act and on Bill C-100 – An Act to implement the Agreement between Canada, the United States of America and Mexico.

These end of session shenanigans further demonstrate the arrogance of the government, who have consistently dismissed the legitimate concerns important issues and legislation. They promised Canadians they would not evoke closure or time allocation on legislation and not introduce omnibus bills in which they could hide controversial policy changes.

If you have any questions or concerns, you may write me at 4945-50th Street, Camrose, Alberta, T4V 1P9, call 780-608-4600, toll-free 1-800-665-4358, fax 780-608-4603 or e-mail Kevin.Sorenson.c1@parl.gc.ca.

Just Posted

Alberta Justice Minister advocates UCP rural crime plan

Expanded property rights, more power to peace officers, demonetizing scrap mental part of UCP plan

Input wanted on ABP reorganizing proposal

Five-year review comes up with major revamp to cut costs

Black Press Extreme Education and Career Fair coming to Red Deer College’s Cenovus Learning Commons

Central Albertans can connect with employers on Nov. 28 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Sylvan Lake shoreline flags wrongfully replaced by well-meaning citizen

Al Cameron of VVOC says a loose thread is not enough to replace the Canadian flags on lakeshore

Rebels beat rival to win home tournament

Bashaw’s volleyball senior boys gold-en against Bawlf

Premier vows to fight for oilpatch as drillers forecast almost no growth in 2020

The CAODC said it expects the Canadian drilling rig fleet to continue to shrink

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh meets Trudeau to discuss throne speech

Top ask was the immediate creation of a national universal Pharmacare program

Jagmeet Singh says he’ll vote against throne speech if NDP requests not met

Singh is to meet with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Thursday

Small group of Cherry fans protest his firing at Rogers HQ

One sign at the Toronto rally: ‘Rogers cancels Don, we cancel Rogers’

Ideas for Alberta independence would increase costs, Nenshi says

Province has formed panel to examine how to get what a ‘fairer deal’ from Confederation

Petition to ‘bring back Don Cherry’ goes viral after immigrant poppy rant

Cherry was fired from his co-hosting role for the Coach’s Corner segment on Nov. 11.

‘We love you, Alex!’: Trebek gets choked up by ‘Jeopardy!’ contestant’s answer

The emotional moment came in Monday’s episode when Trebek read Dhruv Gaur’s final answer

Imperial CEO says no to Aspen oilsands project until Alberta oil quotas gone

Imperial confirmed a plan to boost production from its Kearl oilsands mine

Most Read