October 14, 1919

L LIB

James Alexander Robb (Chief Government Whip)

Laurier Liberal

Mr. ROBB:

Well, my understanding is that it was only for export. But nevertheless, in connection with that, it was pointed out that if there was an increased price for flour, there would be a corresponding reduction in the price of bran and shorts.

Topic:   CLASSIFICATION OF HOUSE OF COMMONS OFFICIALS.
Subtopic:   QUESTIONS.
Sub-subtopic:   CANADIAN WHEAT BOARD.
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GRAND TRUNK RAILWAY SYSTEM.

DOCUMENTS LAID ON THE TABLE BY HON MR. (MEIGHEN.

UNION

Arthur Meighen (Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Unionist

Hon. ARTHUR MEIGHEN (Minister of the Interior):

Mr. Speaker, I wish to lay on the Table the correspondence that passed in connection with the negotiations resulting in the final understanding as to the acquisition of the Grand Trunk Railway. The House will observe when the correspondence goes on the Table that it contains four or five cables that passed prior to the

letter of 11th July, 1918, which was intended to be an official summary of the negotiations. These preliminary cables were of a confidential character and were so marked, hnt for the reason that the first cable is referred to by Sir Alfred Smithers in his reply to the official letter of 11th July, it was thought well that these cables should be given to the Mouse as well. Conseciuent-ly, although of that character, and although indeed following verbal conversations between representatives of the company and the Government, they are none the less now made public.

I also lay on the Table certain memoranda, being in the nature of statements and information relative to the Grand Trunk Railway System. That the House may have an idea at the outset of the character of the data now furnished, I will detail briefly the contents of this document. On the first page is a summary from which horn. members will be easily able to turn to whatever specific information they require. Then follow in OTder: A historical account of the system; the territory covered and the districts served; the mileage, a table of mileage in Canada and the United States and of subsidiary tracks ( with map reference numbers); mileage and local relations of companies (with map reference numbers); balance Sheet of the Grand Trunk Railway to December 31st, 1918, ini sterling; balance sheet of the Grand Trunk Railway to December 31st, 1918, in dollars; capitalization December 31st, 1917, Grand Trunk Railway in dollars; funded debt Grand Trunk Pacific fixed charges, whose guarantee and months interest due as at December 31st, 1918; Grand Trunk Pacific Railway branch lines company balance sheet; earnings and expenses Grand Trunk Railway six months, 1919; income account Grand Trunk Railway, 1912 to 1918, in dollars; revenues combined Grand Trunk Railway System without Grand Trunk Pacific for 1917; income account Grand Trunk Pacific; traffic statistics Grand Trunk Railway; guarantees by Grand Trunk Railway; dates of maturities short (term paper Grand Trunk Railway; deficits Central Vermont and income cost of Atlantic and St. Dawrence Railway; deficits Western American companies; dividends paid; voting power of stocks; maps of the Grand Trunk Railway System in the East and of the Grand Trunk Pacific System. The brief summary thus given is extended in more detail on the next page, but that I do not need to recapitulate now. This information is furnished by the Government officials upon

sworn statements and annual reports of the company itself.

I desire to move:

That four hundred copies of the two sets oi papers now laid upon the Table be forthwith iprinted in the English language, that two hundred copies he forthwith printed in ths French language, and that Rule 74 in relation thereto be suspended.

Mr. THOMAS V1EN (Lotbiniere) : May I ask the minister if in the traffic statistics now given a distinction is made as to traffic originating in the United States and as -to that originating in Canada? If there is no such distinction, can it not be furnished?

Topic:   GRAND TRUNK RAILWAY SYSTEM.
Subtopic:   DOCUMENTS LAID ON THE TABLE BY HON MR. (MEIGHEN.
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UNION

Arthur Meighen (Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Unionist

Hon. Mr. MEIGHEN:

I think that, generally sjpeaking, the distinction that the hon. member asks for can ibe drawn from the traffic statement.

Mr. JEAN J. DENIS (Joliette): Mr. Speaker, the documents just deposited by the minister are part of the information which I was seeking. I do not think it would he fair for the House to be called upon to examine the resolution in Committee of the Whole before we have been handed printed copies of these documents according to the motion that has just been passed. Moreover, it appears to me that at least twenty-four hours should be given hon. members to become acquainted to a certain extent with the contents of these documents before we begin discussing the motion. I hope we may have the declaration of the minister that we shall not be called upon to discuss this matter until the documents have been printed and we have had at least twenty-four hours within which to consider them.

Topic:   GRAND TRUNK RAILWAY SYSTEM.
Subtopic:   DOCUMENTS LAID ON THE TABLE BY HON MR. (MEIGHEN.
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L LIB

Georges Henri Boivin (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Laurier Liberal

Mr. DEPUTY SPEAKER:

This question is not relevant to the motion now before the House. The question could be asked upon the motion for adjournment in connection with an inquiry as to the business which is to be taken up to-morrow; by unanimous consent the answer could be given immediately.

Topic:   GRAND TRUNK RAILWAY SYSTEM.
Subtopic:   DOCUMENTS LAID ON THE TABLE BY HON MR. (MEIGHEN.
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UNION

Arthur Meighen (Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Unionist

Hon. Mr. MEIGHEN:

As to proceeding with the resolution, it will be realized in a moment that the fundamental features of the resolution can be fully discussed without the mastering of all the detail which is set forth in the data now furnished. At the same time, the House will not be asked to come to a final conclusion as to the terms until there has been opportunity for study of the details. But we would be foolish, I think, to waste time, unless there is other business that the House can do, by discussing such features

as are now well known and as have, indeed, been before the country for about twenty months.

Topic:   GRAND TRUNK RAILWAY SYSTEM.
Subtopic:   DOCUMENTS LAID ON THE TABLE BY HON MR. (MEIGHEN.
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Motion agreed to. On motion of Sir George Foster the House adjourned at 5.30 p.m. W/ednesday, October 15, 1919.


October 14, 1919