The House met at 1:30 p.m.

MR. SPEAKER (Hodder): Order, please!

Admit strangers.

Before we begin the afternoon proceedings, the Speaker would like to make a statement relative to a point made by the Member for Signal Hill-Quidi Vidi on March 24. During the House sitting on that day, the Member for Signal Hill-Quidi Vidi asked for clarification on the parliamentary rules that apply to the use of displays, exhibits and props.

Marleau and Montpetit, on page 520, are very direct and to the point on this matter, and I quote, "Speakers have consistently ruled out of order displays or demonstrations of any kind used by Members to illustrate or emphasize their positions. Similarly, props or any kind, used as a way of making a silent comment on issues, have always been found unacceptable in the Chamber. Members may hold notes in their hands but they will be interrupted and reprimanded by the Speaker if they use papers, documents or other objects to illustrate their remarks. Exhibits have also been ruled inadmissible."

In the House of Commons, examples of printed material used as a prop and ruled out of order include advertisements, newspapers, books and money. Exhibits have also been ruled inadmissible and they would include samples of grain, detergent boxes, boxes of letters and petitions, a wig, a pen, a child's toy, a birthday card, a sign held up by a member, and when the Canadian flag was used as a display in 1998, Speaker Parent ruled that the use of the Canadian flag as a exhibit had caused disorder and asked members to take their flags out of the Chamber.

In our House, Speakers have ruled consistently on the use of props, displays and exhibits. Members are always free to refer to materials in their comments; however, with all due respect to our friends in television land and to the optics that such displays create, Parliament functions best when members listen attentively to the wisdom of other hon. members.

Members will recall that on March 24, the Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture, in answering a question raised by an hon. member, held in his hand a document on a fishery matter. When the minister opened the document to show photos contained therein, the document then became a display. The Speaker brought this matter to the attention of the minister following Question Period, and when some hon. member asked the minister to table his document the minister complied forthwith. The rule in this regard is quite direct as well. It reads, and I quote, "A Minister is not at liberty to read or quote from a despatch or other state paper not before the House without being prepared to lay it on the Table." Beauchesne's 6th Edition, page 151. However, members will note that a private member has neither the right nor the obligation to table an official, or any other, document.

The Speaker thanks the Member for Signal Hill-Quidi Vidi for seeking the clarification. Should he or any other member wish to discuss the matter or any other parliamentary rule, the Speaker invites members to visit his office to facilitate the process.

Statements by Members

MR. SPEAKER: The Speaker notes this afternoon the following members' statements: The hon. the Member for the District of Grand Bank, the hon. the Member for the District of Mount Pearl, the hon. the Member for the District of Bay of Islands, the hon. the Member for the District of St. John's Centre, the hon. the Member for the District of Torngat Mountains, and the hon. the Member for the District of Bonavista North.

The hon. the Member for the District of Grand Bank.

MS FOOTE: Mr. Speaker, I rise today to commemorate the life of Charles Patten, otherwise known as Charlie Patten, a devoted son of Grand Bank and a gentleman who never forgot his roots.

Mr. Patten, born in Grand Bank on November 21, 1925 to Harold and Bessie Patten, was educated at the United Church Academy. He left home as a young man to become a merchant seaman while he was waiting to go in the navy. He served with the Royal Navy during World War II. During the 1950's, while living in St. John's, he met and fell in love with Susan Harvey. They married in 1954 and raised four children: Robert, John, Margaret and Jane.

At the time of his passing, Mr. Patten was president of A. Harvey & Company Limited, Browning Harvey Limited, Harvey's Oil and C.N. Patten & Company Limited. Despite his vast business interests and tremendous success, he never forgot his home town.

That Mr. Patten never forgot his roots is evident in the many contributions he made to the town he loved. Most recently he was a proud supporter and honourary patron of the Mariners' Memorial Project in Grand Bank. In 2001, Mr. Patten made a personal donation of $100,000 to the Grand Bank Public Library to carry out extensive renovations. There was never an event or function that was hosted by the Town of Grand Bank that he did not support or attend, if at all possible.

Mr. Speaker, I ask all members of this House to join me in paying tribute to the life of one of Grand Bank's favourite sons. He will be sadly missed, especially by the people of Grand Bank.

Thank you.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for the District of Mount Pearl.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. DENINE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker, I recently attended the Mount Pearl Focus on Youth Awards Banquet 2005. This event is organized and administered by the Mount Pearl Parks & Recreation Department and the City of Mount Pearl, and they do a tremendous job.

It is sponsored by various community-minded companies and corporations to honour youth, and adults working with youth, who make contributions to the community in the areas of sports, self-improvement and volunteerism. I would like to thank the sponsors for this event, because without their help this event could not be possible.

Mr. Speaker, to be nominated for these awards is just as important as winning. Their friends, coaches and peers nominated them because they wanted to recognize them for their outstanding achievements throughout the year.

The winners this year are: Male Youth of the Year, Andrew Harvey; Female Youth of the Year, Renee Hodder; RNC Youth in Service Award, Renee Hodder; Youth Volunteer of the Year, Amy Skinner; Youth Female Athlete of the Year, Heather Jones; Youth Male Athlete of the Year, Stephen Brien; Youth Team of the Year, Mount Pearl PeeWee A Blazers; Adult Volunteer Working with Youth in Sport, Ian Graham; Youth Group of the Year, Church of the Ascension Youth Group; Adult Volunteer Working with Youth, Maria Rendell; Visual Arts Award, Mark Snow; Performing Arts Award, Jacquelyn French; Performing Arts Recognition Awards (Groups): the Mount Pearl Show Choir, the O'Donel cast of "Crazy For You", the O'Donel High Jazz Band.

I am truly overwhelmed to hear of all the accomplishments of these young people in our community, and the adults working with them. Their dedication and contribution to our city is invaluable, and I commend them on all their efforts.

I want to ask all of the members of this House to join with me in congratulating each and every one of them for their fine achievements throughout the year.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Bay of Islands.

MR. JOYCE: Mr. Speaker, I rise in the House today to recognize a seventeen-year-old youth from my district.

Meghan Matthews of Summerside has been active in the Summerside Rockets 4-H Club for the past thirteen years. She was recently chosen by the provincial selection committee to represent her club and the Province to attend the U.S. National 4-H Conference in Washington, D.C., which was held March 30 to April 6.

Meghan was one of ten delegates from across Canada and joined over 300 American 4-H members at the seventy-fifth anniversary of the conference. Meghan was chosen based on her involvement in 4-H, her community and other leadership roles, as well as her expressed interest and knowledge of agriculture.

Last fall, Meghan attended the national 4-H conference in Toronto and has previously represented the Humber Rotary Club at the fifty-third Adventure in Citizenship Program held in Ottawa in 2003.

I had the opportunity to be in attendance at functions when Meghan has spoken and she is truly a great leader and a great ambassador of the 4-H movement.

I ask all members to join me in extending congratulations to Meghan on her accomplishments and wish her well and the best for the future.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for St. John's Centre.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SKINNER: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

I rise today, Mr. Speaker, to recognize the accomplishment of the Avalon Celtics Triple A Bantam Hockey Team.

This team competed in the Irving Oil Cup Championships held in Kensington, Prince Edward Island this past weekend and were successful in earning a bronze medal in the consolation game. The Irving Oil Cup is the premiere prize in Triple A Bantam Hockey in Atlantic Canada and is held every year to determine the best team in Atlantic Canada. Over sixty-six Triple A Bantam teams compete for this championship.

The Avalon Celtics played five tough games to capture the bronze medal and were very fine representatives for this Province. Their character on and off the ice was exemplary, and I offer my congratulations to them on their achievement. Congratulations, as well, to their coaches, Steve Power and Tony Cuomo, their trainer Scott Simms and their manager Charlie Pope on a job well done throughout the year.

The bronze medal in the Irving Oil Cup by the Avalon Celtics capped off a successful year, where they also won the Tri-Com(City) championship and the provincial championship.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Torngat Mountains.

MR. ANDERSEN: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

I rise today to acknowledge one of the finest RCMP members, Corporal Amy Mitchell, for receiving Newfoundland and Labrador's Crime Stoppers 2004 Police Officer of the Year Award.

Corporal Mitchell was recognized for her work in Natuashish, Labrador. She was promoted to the rank of Corporal and Officer in Charge in July, 2003 and has gone beyond the call of duty for the community ever since. She has been adamant in rejuvenating the Tribunal Police Force and developing community initiatives.

Undoubtedly, she has turned the department into a well-respected and valuable operation in Natuashish. Members of the community highly regard Corporal Mitchell for all she has done.

Corporal Mitchell was also awarded the Leadership Award which she received at the Atlantic Women in Law Enforcement Conference in New Brunswick some time ago.

Mr. Speaker, I ask all members of this hon. House to join with me in congratulating Corporal Amy Mitchell for her continued service to the people of Natuashish.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Bonavista North.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. HARDING: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Today, I rise to congratulate the members of the Loyal Orange Lodge #110, Pool's Island. On April 9, the organization reached a tremendous milestone when they celebrated their one-hundredth anniversary.

The Loyal Orange Lodge on Pool's Island received its charter on April 9, 1905. From fifteen original members the society quickly grew to 100 and the Lodge became an important fixture in the lives of the people of Bonavista North.

In 1984, the original structure, in need of extensive repairs, was sold and a new building was later purchased. That Lodge is currently home to the society's twenty-three members. At one time, the Loyal Orange Society was represented by nine lodges along the coast of Bonavista North, but today, only the Pool's Island Lodge remains.

Prior to the days of universal health care and government assistance, this fraternal society made sure that its members were cared for in times of strife and sickness. Today, that sense of brotherhood and family is carried over into all aspects of community life.

The Loyal Orange Society, and others like it, represents a period in our history when we as a people relied on each other to survive and thrive, regardless of the external circumstances that impacted our lives. In a time when we often seem to be more concerned with our own individual welfare and success, it is important to remember and celebrate organizations such as the Loyal Orange Society.

Today, I ask all hon. members, Mr. Speaker, to join with me in congratulating the Loyal Orange Lodge of Pool's Island as it celebrated its one-hundredth anniversary.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

Statements by Ministers

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Government House Leader.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. E. BYRNE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker, I rise to inform this House of the successful roll-out of the Province's online mineral claim staking program.

The online staking system went into operation on February 28, 2005, and Newfoundland and Labrador is now only one of three provincial jurisdictions to provide clients with the ability to stake mineral claims via the Internet.

Mr. Speaker, since the system became operational, over 4,000 claims have been staked online by clients at various locations from across Newfoundland, Labrador West, and from junior mining companies based in other parts of the country. Furthermore, on March 8, 2005, during the recent annual convention of the Prospectors and Developers Association, commonly known as the PDAC in Toronto, Charlie Dearin of South Coast Ventures Incorporated staked four claims near York Harbour online. This is the first time a claim has ever been staked in Newfoundland and Labrador from the convention floor of the PDAC.

Mr. Speaker, comments from our clients who have successfully completed staking transactions online have been extremely favourable. The ease of use, the convenience of the 24/7 staking, and above all, the confidence in securing a mineral title upon completion of staking transaction, are features of the system that better serve those in the business of mineral exploration.

The implementation of the online staking program marks the completion of a major information technology initiative within the mineral lands division. The new Mineral Rights Administration System was developed in partnership with xwave. As well, during the design and development of the system, considerable consultation with the industry was completed and we responded to the concerns and issues identified.

Using state-of-the-art technology, the MIRIAD System integrates a custom database for mineral titles management with the geographic information system and government's financial management system. MIRIAD also incorporates the fundamental hallmarks, Mr. Speaker, of this Province's mineral land tenure policies and provides a competitive and impartial mechanism for mineral land tenure to be acquired for exploration and development.

Mr. Speaker, as members know, the Internet has become an invaluable tool to the individuals and companies involved in mineral exploration and development. The provision of essential services like mineral claim staking via the Internet is the natural progression and the way of the future for jurisdictions that are serious in attracting private investment in mineral exploration and development.

Mr. Speaker, the MIRIAD System is another tool by which this Province continues to encourage the exploration of our mineral resources. We will continue to seek opportunities to promote this Province's mineral prospectivity using the Internet.

We anticipate that expenditures on mineral exploration in 2005 will reach $40 million, up from $29 million last year. This investment is certainly positive for the Province's economy, particularly for rural parts of Newfoundland and Labrador. It is our hope that increased exploration will lead to more finds, more developments, and, inevitably, more jobs and benefits for Newfoundlanders and Labradorians.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Opposition House Leader.

MR. PARSONS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

I appreciate the minister providing me with notice today of his announcement, and thank him for same.

It is very nice to see that government, despite their slash and burn mandate since 2003, did consider a good Liberal initiative here and bring this into the mining department. Indeed, it is very good. It is too bad, I say, that we don't see this kind of progressive and positive happening in other areas of the mining department; for example, the Mineral Incentive Program which started out some years ago, hailed by those in the industry as a great thing. The budget has been cut from $2.3 million to $1.6 million; $625,000 slashed in last year's Budget. It is too bad we don't see that restored so it could be a positive move, along with this here being a positive move.

Not to underrate this, this is indeed very good. If we are a Province that claims to be open for business to the world, where else should be other than on the World Wide Web, where it doesn't matter where you are. If you are in Manchester, England or in Corner Brook, Newfoundland, you can use the technology of the world to stake your claim.

Congratulations and hats off, I say, to the people in the department who have worked very hard and diligently to make this a possibility, putting us again, as a Province, on the world stage when it comes to using technology.

I guess we all know now that Voisey's Bay was indeed a good move, and if we want to see several more Voisey's Bays in our Province, this is the kind of action that we need to see to make it a reality.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Labrador West.

MR. COLLINS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker, and I thank the minister for an advanced copy of his statement.

I guess greater ease is generally associated as being a good thing, and I think it is in this case as well, but I want to say to the minister, I think we need to be watchful and monitor the situation closely so that the big players in the mining industry do not try and corner the exploration activity in the Province at the detriment of smaller players in the prospecting industry. It is obviously important to generate a high level of interest and activity in exploration, Mr. Speaker, because when we have a mine development take place, than obviously that is associated with high levels of employment and followed by important employment opportunities that provide good pay and high level of benefits for the people who work there.

I, too, would like to acknowledge the work of xwave, a provincial company that plays a leading role in the technological field in our Province in the industry and also compliment the people in the department who have worked hand-in-hand with them to put this in place.

MR. SPEAKER: Further statements by ministers.

The hon. the Minister of Education.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. HEDDERSON: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to inform hon. members of this House about a new Department of Education resource entitled: On Course: A Handbook for Grade 9 Students and Parents.

This handbook is designed to help students entering high school to plan a three-year program which will enable them to meet graduation requirements, and be prepared to pursue their post-secondary interests.

High school is an entirely different learning experience from the intermediate grades, Mr. Speaker. Students are given some leeway in choosing a high school program that best meets their needs and interests. It is critical, however, that our young people, and their parents, understand the importance of careful planning, as students entering Level I will be making choices that affect their post-secondary options.

On Course provides essential information on the high school curriculum, the credit system, new graduation requirements, and the academic expectations that various post-secondary institutions require of their applicants. It also contains, Mr. Speaker, valuable information on scholarships and entrance requirements for Memorial University, and the public and private college systems. The handbook concludes with helpful hints on good study habits, how to prepare for a test, and completing homework assignments.

This handbook will prove invaluable for both parents and students, Mr. Speaker. Careful planning is an important factor contributing to successful high school years. We encourage students to talk to their parents, guidance counsellors or teachers, and to make use of this valuable resource so that they can make the right decisions when mapping out their high school education.

Lastly, Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to provide copies of this new resource to all members of the hon. House today, for them, of course, to share with their, perhaps, family members or constituencies.

Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Twillingate & Fogo.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. REID: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

I would like to thank the minister for the advanced copy of his statement. While I think that the handbook might help students in the larger urban centres, like St. John's, Mount Pearl and maybe even Corner Brook plan a three-year program, it will do little for the students in rural areas of the Province, because with the teacher cuts and the program cuts that we have seen in the last few years, there will not be the same number of courses offered to them.

I also say to the minister, with 256 teachers taken out of the system this year, another 145 coming next year, children in rural areas of the Province will not need this handbook to take their courses because they will be lucky if they can get the basic course requirements to be able to graduate.

I also say to the minister, he will probably need to change the handbook again before September because with the 145 teachers coming out now, it is undoubtedly they will be losing more and more courses from rural areas of the Province and then they will also need to change the handbook.

So, Mr. Speaker, I say to the minister, it is much to do about nothing when you are cutting programs and slashing teachers around the Province, especially in the rural areas where they need more teachers and more programs.

Thank you very much.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for Signal Hill-Quidi Vidi.

MR. HARRIS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

I do not see a problem having a handbook for students urging them to consider post-secondary education after their high school, but I have a real problem, Mr. Speaker, with this minister or this government putting the private college system on an equal par with the public college system that provides a low-cost quality education system to the people of Newfoundland and Labrador, whereas the private system is there charging enormous amounts of money on a profit-making basis and we all know the problem we have had with this system; no warning in this about that. I would say, Mr. Speaker, if this minister does not, in his handbook, include the enormous costs of private education and tell the students what terrible history we have had in this Province with them, than he is not doing his job.

MR. SPEAKER: Further statements by ministers. Oral Questions.

Oral Questions

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Leader of the Opposition.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. GRIMES: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker, the people of the Province are now very well aware of a promise made by the Fisheries Minister in a letter to the FFAW a year ago this month. The promise was to commence a public debate on the issue of production quotas before implementation. His exact quote, Mr. Speaker - and I am quoting his words from his letter: I must, and I will, ensure that all stakeholders have an opportunity to participate freely in the debate over this very important issue. Mr. Speaker, almost three weeks ago, just before the Easter break, the FFAW wrote to the minister and to the Premier asking them to fulfill this promise.

I ask the Premier, Mr. Speaker: When is his government going to respond to that letter from the FFAW and get together with them to hopefully find a way to get this year's crab fishery up and running?

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

[Applause from the gallery]

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

I have to remind visitors in the gallery that they are not to participate or demonstrate in any way, or to show their approval or disapproval of any proceedings in the House. I ask their co-operation in that regard.

The hon. the Premier.

[Disturbance in the Gallery]

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please! Order, please!

If we continue to have disruptions, the Chair will have no other choice but to recess the House and ask members of the public, who are in the gallery, to leave the House until we can have order restored.

The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WILLIAMS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker, the members of the union have heard the minister speak on this. He has indicated that he is prepared to sit down and have a discussion with members of the union about the issues that are involved. He has made it very clear, government has made it very clear, and I have made it very clear, that we have made a decision to proceed on this. Now, if they want to sit down at the Table and discuss exactly how it is going to be implemented, then we will do it. Our intention here, as a government, is not to punish anyone. Our intention here is to stabilize and sustain the industry in the Province, and that is really what it is all about.

There has never been a decision made on the fishery in this Province that everybody agreed with. It is not just the way it is. It always affects one or the other different parties. What -

[Disturbance in the Gallery]

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please! Order, please!

It is obvious to the Speaker that people in the gallery are not -

[Disturbance in the Gallery]

MR. SPEAKER: This House is now in recess until order can be restored.


MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

I do believe, by agreement, we had used about two minutes of Question Period. We will proceed on from there. I am not sure whether the hon. the Premier had finished his answer to his question. If he had, then we can go to a further question.

The hon. the Leader of the Opposition, if you have another question you can pose it now.

MR. GRIMES: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

The Premier, in beginning to answer, indicated the government was willing to meet at any time. I ask of the Premier, Mr. Speaker: Why, then, on an Open Line program on Friday morning, when the Premier was asked publicly about resuming meetings, rather than talk about having meetings, he threw gasoline on the fire when he told fish harvesters that he had made up his mind; they should give up their fight and they should go fishing. That did not sound like an invitation to a meeting, Mr. Speaker, from anyone I know.

Mr. Speaker, the vast majority of fish harvesters in this Province are independent business people who have made significant investments in their equipment and livelihoods. I ask the Premier, as a former businessman himself: Why is he talking down to these people, these business people, trying to limit competition and trying to force them into a system that no other business person in this Province would be expected to accept?

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

[Applause from gallery]

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

The Chair again reminds all visitors in the gallery that they are not to participate in any way to show approval, disapproval, or in any other way to make a demonstration as a consequence of anything that is said on the floor of the House.

The Chair recognizes the hon. the Premier.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

PREMIER WILLIAMS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker, I do not need the Leader of the Opposition to put words in my mouth. There was no question said about the fishermen giving up their fight or anything else. That was not implied at all. I have the transcript before me. I said, if they want to sit around the table and have a conversation or have a meeting or have a discussion with the minister, he said he is quite prepared to do that. The minister has said that time and time again. If the fishermen want to sit around the table and have a discussion, then we are prepared to do that. Our position is very, very clear on that, Mr. Speaker. We have said that all along.

[Comments from the gallery]

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

PREMIER WILLIAMS: What we are trying to do is have a workable fishery in this Province, and I said it is about sustainability. It is about stability in the fishery.

We are not trying to impose our will on anyone here. We have made a decision. It is a pilot project. The industry understands that this is a pilot project. If the project does not work, then it will be reconsidered, but at this particular point -

[Comments from the gallery]

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

I have to remind the visitors in the gallery that if there are further disruptions, comments or demonstrations from the gallery, the Speaker will have no choice but to recess the House. If I should recess it again, the galleries will remain closed for the balance of this sitting day.

The hon. the Premier.

PREMIER WILLIAMS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker, there have been, I guess, through the Dunne process, about fifty meetings with people from over a hundred communities in the Province. There has been extensive consultation. The recommendations came from the Dunne report, and we are following those recommendations, and there have been other studies that have been done in this Province. So, unlike the previous government, we have made decisions and we are going to stand by them, and we are going to try it on a pilot basis. We cannot do any more than that; however, we are prepared to sit down and have a discussion with the fishermen - and the minister has already said that he is prepared to do that - to talk about implementation and issues like price. That offer still stands.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: A supplementary, the hon. the Leader of the Opposition.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. GRIMES: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

The Premier knows full well that the government is not following the recommendations of Mr. Dunne, who said this should never be done unless there was agreement from the harvesters and the union. He knows that. It is in black and white, and he can try to twist it if he wants.

Mr. Speaker, let me talk to the Premier and ask him a question in language that he and the people of the Province clearly understand: A promise is a promise. I ask the Premier if it sounds familiar, because the people of the Province fully supported the Premier when he used that phrase and took that stance in talking to the Prime Minister of the country about the Atlantic Accord: A promise is a promise and you should live to your promises.

If the Premier still believes - I ask, Mr. Speaker, if the Premier still believes - that a promise is a promise, why is he still adamant in trying to force the implementation of a production quota system for crab without consultation, breaking his and his minister's clearly stated written promise to the fish harvesters of the Province to involve them in a full consultation first, before any implementation? I ask: Is a promise still a promise, or only when it is convenient for the Premier?

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Premier.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

PREMIER WILLIAMS: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Mr. Speaker, what I repeat here is, this is a pilot project. It is not a final process. It will not be a final process until the pilot project period expires. During that time there will be practical experience.

As well, I can only repeat again and again, there has been lots of consultation around this Province. It has been done, it will continue to be done, and it always has been done. As a result, we are going -

[Disturbance in the gallery]

MR. SPEAKER: This House will recess and the galleries will remain closed when the House resumes sitting.


MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

The hon. the Government House Leader.

MR. E. BYRNE: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

After just having a short discussion with the Official Opposition, we are moving that the House adjourn for the remainder of the sitting day.

MR. SPEAKER: The motion is that this House do now adjourn for the remainder of the sitting day.

All those in favour, ‘aye'.


MR. SPEAKER: All those against, ‘nay'.


This House now stands adjourned until tomorrow , Tuesday, April 12 at 1:30 in the afternoon.

On motion, the House at its rising adjourned until tomorrow, Tuesday, April 12, at 1:30 p.m.