August 4, 1917

LIB
CON

Robert Rogers (Minister of Public Works)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ROGERS:

Yes. The rental has been figured on the basis of the cost, and we consider it a fair way to figure it. The rentals are very moderate and reasonable. It is true, there has been a necessity for a large increase in the number of buildings rented in the past few years, by reason of the number of employees, and I may say we have requests almost every week for increased accommodation. The staff has complained very bitterly in some cases that they had not room provided under the law, and we do not come within the Factory Act, which provides so many feet for each person. The Militia Department is only allowing 17 feet to each employee, and the Factory Act provides for 30 feet. Therefore, there is a special demand at the present time for increased space for the Militia Department, to correct that condition. Hon. gentlemen can see the difficulties we are up against. When there is necessity to rent a building, to rent it at the lowest possible amount, which we ourselves have figured on the basis of 6 per cent of the actual cost. That is calculated by the deputy and architect in every case.

[Mr. Puffslev.i

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CON

Frederick Laurence Schaffner

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SCHAFFNER:

It occurred to me that perhaps those buildings on Wellington street were not used to the extent to which they could be used. We may be paying too high a rent for individual buildings, but I think any medical man looking over a great' many buildings would feel sure that there were too many people in certain rooms. The minister refers to that point, and it is very noticeable. The buildings have not the floor space required for the people employed in them. What I particularly wanted to know was whether the Government was utilizing the buildings on Wellington street. It seems to me, from casual observation, that they are not using the buildings as much as they could.

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LIB
LIB

Pius Michaud

Liberal

Mr. MICHAUD:

I understand the Government is going to discharge about 1,700 >

civil servants. That will give ample space and will prevent overcrowding just now.

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CON

Robert Rogers (Minister of Public Works)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ROGERS:

That *will help some. I understand that we are utilizing every one of the buildings on Wellington street which is suitable for use. We sometimes have difficulty in getting various branches of the department to go into individual buildings of that kind, because they cannot all have the accomodation together, but we are utilizing the buildings so far as we possibly can.

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LIB
CON
LIB
CON

Robert Rogers (Minister of Public Works)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ROGERS:

I have not that information, but will get it.

Dominion public buildings-Salaries of caretakers, engineers, firemen, etc., $550,000.

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LIB
CON

Robert Rogers (Minister of Public Works)

Conservative (1867-1942)

*Mr. ROGERS:

That is owing to the increase in the number of caretakers and the increase in salaries that we have been obliged to make at the present time, due to the high cost of living. With the additional buildings rented we have additional expenses.

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LIB
CON

Robert Rogers (Minister of Public Works)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ROGERS:

We are proposing 10 per cent increase, but it has not been made yet.

Mr. MoKENZIE: That will apply to public 'buildings?

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CON
LIB

George William Kyte

Liberal

Mr. KYTE:

There is an increase of $3,000 in this item. I suppose that is due to the fact that prohibition is in force in Ottawa.

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CON

Robert Rogers (Minister of Public Works)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ROGERS:

I might say that this

item represents water all over the Dominion, so that it is due to the fact that we have prohibition in so many parts of Canada as well as Ottawa.

Progress reported.

On motion of Hon. Rogers, the House adjourned at 6 p.m.

Monday, August 6, 1917.

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August 4, 1917