August 23, 1917

LIB

William Pugsley

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY:

I do not suggest that for a moment, but I could not see any specific items to correspond with them.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

There is no specific item. '

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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LIB

William Pugsley

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY:

Then I would understand those bonds were so.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

Or pledged for a

note issue.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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LIB

William Pugsley

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY:

And, the money lies there? These figures are not represented by any items in construction account.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

Except such as would be spent.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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LIB

William Pugsley

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY:

I see there is due to

other companies on construction account $16,666,957.26. Has the minister obtained any information from any outside source with regard to the 'value of the land grant? I urged very strongly that in view of the enormous liability of some $21,000,000 in land grant bonds outstanding, which are in no way essential to the railway system, whatever else [Parliament was asked to do it should not be asked to deal in any way with the stock of the land company, which would create a moral, if not a legal obligation, to make good these land grant bonds. In that connection the minister told me he would ascertain whether the land grants of the province of Quebec and of the province of Ontario were included, or whether Ithose bonds simply covered the lands in the western provinces.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

When my hon.

friend asked me the question I informed him correctly, although I was not positive of it myself, that the lands in the province of Ontario and the province of Quebeo were not pledged .under the bond mortgages. The lands which were pledged were those in the West to which my hon. friend

has referred. We have no means of knowing the value of those lands. In any event, it would be a matter of estimate. The only means we have of knowing their value would be the sales which have taken place. I laid upon the table of the House and placed upon Hansard a statement showing the sales made, and having regard to the prices obtained from those sales, it would appear that about $15 an acre was the price. I believe that is the price at which their auditors have taken the lands in. I do not say those lands are worth that money. It seems to me that would have to be taken into consideration by the arbitrators appointed, if they regard it as desirable to value the assets of the company. I am not quite able to follow the argument of my hon. friend with respect to those lands, because he seems to suggest that we should leave them out; that we should not take them in at all. That could be done 'only if we repudiated the liability of the bonds which had been issued, secured by them. I understood my hon. friend the other day to suggest that we should do that, that is, that we might not pay the bonds outstanding which had been issued against those land grants by the company, but I would point out to my hon. friend that that part of the debenture debt, although secured by those lands, is the same as any other part of the debenture debt, because the proceeds went into the construction of the railway.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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LIB

William Pugsley

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY:

How does the minister know that?

Sir THOMAS WHITE; That is established by the Government auditors who are working on the books now, and by the company's own auditors. I do not think anything could be more clearly established than that.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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LIB

William Pugsley

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY:

In that case will the minister tell me the amount of cash realized from the sale of those bonds?

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

According to the blue book issued in 1914, 5 per cent land debentures were issued to the amount of $16,274,068.60. The proceeds were $14,092,245.94.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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LIB

William Pugsley

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY:

Those figures should be looked into.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
Permalink
CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

They have been gone over a dozen times.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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LIB

William Pugsley

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY:

There is in the blue book issued in 1914 a statement as to 4 per cent land bonds issued to the amount

of $3,196,426. The proceeds are put down as $3,679,125, or in other words, the proceeds are about $500,000 more than the par value of the 4 per cent land grant bonds. I am sure that even the Canadian Pacific never issued any of its land grant bonds so much above par value.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
Permalink
CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

There is an explanation about that.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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LIB

William Pugsley

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY:

Perhaps the minister will give me the explanation. I cannot find it. In what year were they issued?

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

If my hon. friend will look at page 7 of the Financial Statements, he will find the information. If my hon. friend is particularly curious with regard to the matter, I can readily get the information he requires.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
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LIB

William Pugsley

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY:

What does the minister think about the matter?

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
Permalink
CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

I think it is very probable and I will tell my hon. friend why. There was a four per cent land grant issue that contained the assignment of a contract from the Government, and that issue was adequate to take care of the interest charges. My hon. friend knows that the interest rates towards the beginning of this century were very low. This rate of interest was very favourable, almost as good as that of a Government security. The financial comptroller of railways tells me that that debenture stock produced the amount shown in the blue book of 1914. If my hon. friend thinks the matter is of essential importance we could make further inquiries and see if, by any chance, there is an error in connection with it. I do not believe there is any substantial error; in fact, I do not believe there is any error at all.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
Permalink
LIB

William Pugsley

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY:

waited until default took place, as it must take place unless the Government comes to the assistance of the road, they would be able under the provisions of section 24 to step in and acquire the entire system without involving the country in this enormous liability.

I desire to repeat that this is not the time to pour out these.millions of money to Messrs. Mackenzie and Mann. The Minister of Finance has found the people of Canada so responsive to his demand for taxes that he thinks the people are able and willing to pour their millions freely into the treasury of this country. He forgets that he has made the people of Canada believe that he wanted these enormous sums raised by way of taxation in order to enable Canada to do her part in carrying on this war. The people have never dreamed that these moneys which he has been taking out of their pockets were to be poured into the lap of Mackenzie and Mann-these favourite sons of fortune whose headquarters are in the beloved home of my hon. friend the Minister of Finance, the city of Toronto. When the people of this country find that the moneys which they have so freely contributed for the purpose of assisting the country in doing her part in this war are to be given away to these gentlemen, they will entertain a very different opinion. The people of Canada do not understand the iniquitous provisions of this measure at the present time, but the people in the great cities are learning from the newspapers what it means, and before long, if the discussion continues for any length of time, the people throughout the country will know what it means, and a storm of indignation will go up from the Atlantic to the Pacific which I think will astonish even the Minister of Finance.

Topic:   CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic:   CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE.
Permalink

August 23, 1917