May 26, 1919

L LIB

Rodolphe Lemieux

Laurier Liberal

Mr. LEMIEUX:

Who are the members of the Pilotage Board in Ottawa?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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UNION

Charles Colquhoun Ballantyne (Minister of Marine and Fisheries; Minister of the Naval Service)

Unionist

Mr. BALLANTYNE:

There is no Pilotage Board here now, but if this Bill ^goes through I hope to have a General Superintendent of Pilots at Ottawa who will be in charge of all the pilots at the various ports. At any port where the French language is the dominant one, we shall provide a super- ' intendent who can speak that language.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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UNION

William Stewart Loggie

Unionist

Mr. LOGGIE:

I wish to congratulate the Government upon bringing down this measure. The matter was not looked into in a near-sighted manner, as the remarks of my hon. friend (Mr. J. H. Sinclair) would seem to indicate. The shipping interests as well as the manufacturing interests were fully heard, and I am sure that better service will be given under a management that is in direct touch with Ottawa than could be given through a local commission. I would like the minister to provide that in any event there shall be a minimum salary of $300. I have heard from harbour masters in small ports that there is a very great grievance because the fees were so small that they did not provide a reasonable remuneration for the work done, and it would be nothing but fair to include a provision that if the fees were only say, $200, the harbour master in any case would get $300. The work is considerable and the responsibility a grave one, and it would be in the interests of all concerned if the minister could fix a minimum for the harbour master in accordance with my suggestion.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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UNION

Charles Colquhoun Ballantyne (Minister of Marine and Fisheries; Minister of the Naval Service)

Unionist

Mr. BALLANTYNE:

I do not think it is necessary to consider that. I have a memorandum showing the remuneration that harbour masters receive at various ports, and. in most cases it amounts to between $500 and $600 a year. We think that that is too low, and that it ought to

be increased, provided they receive sufficient fees, to a maximum of $1,200.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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L LIB

William Duff

Laurier Liberal

Mr. DUFF:

How are the pilots on the St. Lawrence route appointed ?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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UNION

Charles Colquhoun Ballantyne (Minister of Marine and Fisheries; Minister of the Naval Service)

Unionist

Mr. BALLANTYNE:

Whenever there is a vacancy it is advertised through the press, and any one may apply. I presume the hon. member refers to apprentice pilots, who have to pass the examination required every year until they become full-fledged pilots, when they take their turn as vacancies occur.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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L LIB

William Duff

Laurier Liberal

Mr. DUFF:

Is the examination taken before the Pilot Commission or the Civil Service Commission?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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UNION

Charles Colquhoun Ballantyne (Minister of Marine and Fisheries; Minister of the Naval Service)

Unionist

Mr. BALLANTYNE:

The Department ot Marine and Fisheries set the examination and have everything to do with it.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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L LIB

Charles Alphonse Fournier

Laurier Liberal

Mr. FOURNIER:

It is true that practically all the pilots speak both languages, but probably some are not as fluent or as well versed in one or the other language as might be desirable, and I think it might very well be provided that in the case of inquiries or accidents, testimony could be taken in French. I do not quite agree with part of the remarks of the hon. member for Guysborough (Mr. Sinclair). I have the honour to represent the constituency oi Bellechasse, in which there are many pilots, and I do not think my hon. friend has a precise knowledge of the St. Lawrence route. If he travelled with some of the pilots over that route on two or three occasions I am sure he would be convinced that these men are expert navigators. Indeed, I do not think that better or more prudent men could be found. The channel is narrow, and they are obliged to travel at night, and notwithstanding the difficulties they encounter, there are very few, if any, accidents. I suggest that it should be provided that testimony should be accepted in both languages.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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L LIB

William Duff

Laurier Liberal

Mr. DUFF:

In places like Halifax, Vancouver, and St. John, are the local superintendents to be appointed directly by the Minister of Marine or by the Civil Service Commission? The appointment of superintendents in these places is a very important matter, and these men should be appointed by the minister himself, after consultation with the shipping men, who are best informed on the subject. These appointments should not rest in the hands of the Civil Service Commission.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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UNION

Charles Colquhoun Ballantyne (Minister of Marine and Fisheries; Minister of the Naval Service)

Unionist

Mr. BALLANTYNE:

I agree with the views of the hon. member, and while the Civil Service Commission will have the ap-

pointment of local superintendents, I, as minister, will necessarily be called on to pass upon their qualifications. The efficiency of the pilotage system very largely depends on the knowledge and qualifications of the local superintendents.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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L LIB

Georges Parent

Laurier Liberal

Mr. PARENT:

Does the practice of " tour de role " still obtain, and, if so, does the present Bill seek to abolish it?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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UNION

Charles Colquhoun Ballantyne (Minister of Marine and Fisheries; Minister of the Naval Service)

Unionist

Mr. BALLANTYNE:

" Tour de role " still applies.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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L LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Laurier Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE:

There are in the county I represent a very large body of pilots, and I should like to know somewhat more about this Bill. I must say, in justice to the pilotage system in the harbour of Sydney-a system that has been in existence for at least a hundred years-that the work has been excellent, and while there may have been some complaints, as there necessarily are against every human institution, considering the number of pilots at work in Sydney harbour and the very large number of ships with which they have had to cope, I think the number of accidents or complaints of any kind must be a very small percentage indeed. In view of this fact, I would like to be assured that full justice will be done to these men, and that they will not be placed in any worse position than they are under the present management. Is the minister making any provision for members of the pilotage system at Sydney who will be called upon to retire, or' who he thinks should retire? And I may ask also if he is making any provision for the officers who are now employed in. connection with that work. I do not know how many officers there are, but I think there are two or three men who are paid salaries in connection with the work- of the commission and who are doing the work very well. I suppose it would be regarded as just as great a hardship to the men in Sydney to deprive them of theii living as it is to those in Quebec and Montreal, where provision has been made by way of pension for those pilots who were retired. I am not finding fault because such provision has been made by reason of a change in the system, but I do say that the same justice should be meted out to men in other parts of the country who will be deprived of their living as a result of this change. In Sydney harbour under the present plan, which has been in force for some time, apprentices are appointed by the' board and it depends to a great extent upon the ability of the apprentice as to when he shall be admitted to the full

status of a licensed pilot. Once he gets a license I do not think there is any difference between him and others. Can the minister say how old a pilot must be before he gets a license, or is there an age limit; and to what age is he permitted to serve under the provisions of the statute?

I think the maximum age now in Sydney is sixty-five years. I do not know that there is any fixed minimum, but I suppose a man could not become a pilot under twenty-five or thirty years of age at all events. How apprentices can be appointed from Ottawa ratheir puzzles me. The pilotage commission is on the ground there, they know the men, and I have never had very much reason to complain about the appointments they have made. Of course, it has been a political institution. When we were in power, Grits were appointed, but since the change of Govern-a Grit has not had much chance of becoming a pilot or an apprentice. But we did not find very much fault with that, because it was regarded as a part of the party system and as legitimate patronage. Now that a change is proposed I should like some explanation of the system the minister is going to adopt. If it is still going to be the party system, he must be advised by some person in the constituency who has knowledge of party affiliations. If it is not going to be the party system, there must be some agency through which the apprentices and pilots will be appointed regardless of party affiliations. We have already the supposed non-party system in connection with the post office and custom house and other departments, but as I have already pointed out in this House there is a marvellous instinct exercised in making these appointments, and a Grit is never by any possibility appointed where the vacancy should _go to a Tory. I am only mentioning these things so that the minister will devise a system that will .be satisfactory to all concerned and that justice shall be done. I suppose that once a man has been appointed as an apprentice, the position he gets as pilot depends upon the place he takes in the examination. The discrimination, as I regard it, can be more effectively exercised in selecting the apprentices. I think in Sydney harbour we have 32 pilots; 34 would be the limit. I should like to know whether it is the intention of the minister to reduce that number and whether any other radical changes are proposed in the pilotage system at Sydney.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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UNION

Charles Colquhoun Ballantyne (Minister of Marine and Fisheries; Minister of the Naval Service)

Unionist

Mr. BALLANTYNE:

My hon. friend need have no fear of appointments being made

on political grounds. Ever since I have been minister I have paid absolutely no attention to party politics in administering this department, and that will be my attitude so long as I hold office. Hon. members on the other side of the House who call upon me well know that I am as ready at all times to serve them as I am to serve members on this side of the House, and no one will strive harder than I to keep the pilotage system free from political patronage.

With regard to apprentice pilots, the local superintendent at Sydney would report to the general superintendent of pilots at Ottawa, and that report would come before me, so my hon. friend need have no apprehension as to the qualifica-. tions of the apprentices or that' appointments will be made on party lines.

At Sydney there are 33 pilots and 7 apprentices. It is not my intention to interfere with that brganization in any way, except that I have had a request from the port of Sydney to take the pilotage system under the Department of Marine and Fisheries in the same way that Quebec and Montreal have been taken over. The only change will be that instead of the local pilotage commission having charge of the pilots, the local superintendent will have charge of them.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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L LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Laurier Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE:

The minister did not

answer my question as to what he is going to do with the officials there.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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UNION

Charles Colquhoun Ballantyne (Minister of Marine and Fisheries; Minister of the Naval Service)

Unionist

Mr. BALLANTYNE:

The Government

has no pension system for pilots except for those of the Quebec district, and that has to be approved by Parliament each year. The various pilotage systems throughout 'Canada, however, have pension funds of their own and provide for their pilots when they reach the age of 65, which is the age limit. It is not the intention of the Government at the present time to propose a pension fund for pilots. The pilots have annually to pass an eye test and show that they possess the other necessary qualifications, and then when they reach the age of 65 they are generally retired, although a pilot may continue to the age of 70 subject to the approval of the minister. If the pilot on retiring has no means of his own the Pilotage Fund generally takes care of him.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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L LIB

John Howard Sinclair

Laurier Liberal

Mr. J. H. SINCLAIR:

Will there be a

local examiner at each port ?

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
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UNION

Charles Colquhoun Ballantyne (Minister of Marine and Fisheries; Minister of the Naval Service)

Unionist

Mr. BALLANTYNE:

Yes.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink
L LIB

François Jean Pelletier

Laurier Liberal

Mr. PELLETIER:

I understand that this legislation is for the purpose of putting

the different pilotage systems under the control of the Minister of Marine and Fisheries. When the Bill comes up we shall have an opportunity of studying all the details. There are several important questions to be considered-the question of pensions, for instance. Conditions vary at the different ports. In Halifax, for instance, the pilots may have to get on the bridge of a ship and stay there for only two or three hours, whereas between Quebec and Father Point they will be on duty from twenty-four to twenty-eight hours. I have no objection to the passing of this resolutiou because we shall have ample time to consider all the important questions involved when the Bill comes up. I approve of the systems being placed under the control of the Minister of Marine and Fisheries. I am somewhat interested in this question because I live down there and understand the conditions. I think it would be of great advantage if the examiners and those in charge of the pilots were required to speak both languages.

Topic:   QUESTIONS PASSED AS ORDERS FOR RETURNS.
Subtopic:   CANADA SHIPPING ACT AMENDMENT.
Permalink

May 26, 1919