April 16, 1935

CON

Alfred Duranleau (Minister of Marine)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. DURANLEAU:

My hon. friend quoted from an order in council awarding a contract to Mr. Maranda of Quebec. Let me say that everything has been done on reports of the engineers; the changes have been carried out on their reports and I hope my hon. friends will not object to the fact that I got the contractor to lower his tender from $389,000 to $354,000, which is practically cost price, I am told by the engineers. I do not think my hon. friend would object to that.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LIB

Charles Gavan Power

Liberal

Mr. POWER:

I was praising you for raising it in another case.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Alfred Duranleau (Minister of Marine)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. DURANLEAU:

We were glad to grant the contract to a man from Quebec who had considerable experience, who knew the unemployment conditions, and who I am told is doing all he can to relieve the situation there. I do not think my hon. friend's point is well taken when he says we should not employ engineers because we should give the full amount of the vote to labourers. These are very important public works and they should be properly supervised.

[Mr. Duranleau.l

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LIB

William Daum Euler

Liberal

Mr. EULER:

In the debate last night the Minister of Public Works made reference to the natural desire that exists more particularly in the smaller communities that the work shall be carried out by the people of the community and tenders accepted from contractors in that locality. It does not always happen that the tenders are restricted to the one community or town; tenders are often received from contractors outside, perhaps in the larger cities. I should like to know whether the minister observes the practice entirely of confining the granting of contracts to people in the particular town in which the work is to be carried out or, if tenders are invited or received from other places, and they happen to be the lowest, whether the contract is necessarily given to the lowest tenderer or whether there is a tendency to restrict the giving of the contract to the people of the town itself. If the minister does intend to give the contracts to residents in the locality in which the work is to be carried out, then it is hardly fair to expect men from outside to tender when there is no practical possibility that they will receive the contract even if their tender is the lowest. I should like to have an expression of opinion from the minister on that point.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart (Minister of Public Works)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART (Leeds):

That is a problem that confronts the department in each individual case. The department feels under obligation to get reasonable competition, and if you make the circle of tenders too limited you are not likely to get that measure of competition which is necessary for the protection of the public interest. Therefore in some cases public tenders are invited, and when there is, in the town or city where the work is being carried on, a contractor who is possibly not the lowest tenderer, then an opportunity is given him to take the work at the amount of the lowest tender, if he is willing to do so. My hon. friend may say that is not fair-

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LIB

William Daum Euler

Liberal

Mr. EULER:

It certainly is not.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart (Minister of Public Works)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART (Leeds):

-to the man who has been invited to tender.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LIB

William Daum Euler

Liberal

Mr. EULER:

It certainly is not.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart (Minister of Public Works)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART (Leeds):

It is not a new practice in the department.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LIB

William Daum Euler

Liberal

Mr. EULER:

That does not make it right.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart (Minister of Public Works)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART (Leeds):

In connection

with every tender that is issued, in the form there is a provision that the lowest or any tender is not necessarily accepted, so they all tender with that information in view. That is well understood. But again I say the

Public Works Program

object is in the first instance to get reasonable and fair competition, and if in connection with fairly large works you limited it to the particular locality you might not get that competition. The circle is therefore made wider, and it is only where there is a competent local contractor who is willing to do the work at the lowest tender that he gets it. That is not done in many instances; it has been done in eight or ten.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LIB

William Daum Euler

Liberal

Mr. EULER:

I am amazed at the statement made by the minister. He has told the committee in so many words that they are practically using outside contractors, putting them to the expense of preparing tenders, probably putting up deposits, only for the purpose of getting the man in the locality itself down to the price of the outside man.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart (Minister of Public Works)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART (Leeds):

My hon. friend has entirely misunderstood me if he says that is the object or purpose.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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?

Clarence Joseph Veniot

Mr. YENIOT:

That is the effect.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart (Minister of Public Works)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART (Leeds):

That is not the motive. Public tenders are invited.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LIB

William Daum Euler

Liberal

Mr. EULER:

I am not trying to do the minister an injustice, but he stated that it was his purpose to get sufficient competition -that is proper-and in order to get sufficient competitive bids he invites outsiders, men not living in the locality, to tender-

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart (Minister of Public Works)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART (Leeds):

Public tender.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LIB

William Daum Euler

Liberal

Mr. EULER:

-and then he says that if the outside man submits the lowest tender he will give the work to the man within the locality, getting him to do it at the amount of the tender submitted by the outsider. In other words, he is merely using the outsider for his own purposes and doing him an injustice. I protest against that sort of thing. It is not a fair way of doing business. The minister ought to decide to give the work to the man within the town or, if he invites tenders from outside, and they are substantially lower, then he is in duty and in honesty bound to give the work to the lowest tenderer.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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LIB

Ian Alistair Mackenzie

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE (Vancouver):

some

time ago, in fact when the discussion opened, I asked a question of the Minister of Public Works and he has not yet replied. I wish to direct his attention to the general provisions of schedule A of the bill and to point out to him that to ask the committee to pass these items as they are set forth is simply an outrageous procedure. I wish in all kindness to the minister to look at these items

which we are asked to pass in blank. If ever a blank cheque was asked for by the present administration in connection with unemployment relief, it is by this bill that we are now discussing. The first item in the schedule is:

Railway grade crossings, $1,000,000.

We are not afforded a single piece of information as to where the work is to be carried out in regard to railway grade crossings. Before we pass this schedule or even clause 2 of the bill, the committee is entitled to the fullest and most detailed information in regard to the plans of the minister or of his colleagues, whoever they may be that are concerned in this, as to the work with respect to this particular item.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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CON

Robert James Manion (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MANION:

May I inform my hon. friend that this is an item the work under which will be done under the supervision of the board of railway commissioners. There^ fore no information could possibly be given because we do not have any. The board of railway commissioners are the people who will choose the grade crossings to be corrected.

Topic:   PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic:   WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT
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April 16, 1935