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March 25, 2013                         HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY PROCEEDINGS             Vol. XLVII No. 81

The House met at 10:00 a.m.

MR. SPEAKER (Wiseman): Order, please!

Please admit strangers.

Please be seated.

SERGEANT-AT-ARMS: Mr. Speaker, His Honour the Lieutenant Governor has arrived.

MR. SPEAKER: Please admit His Honour the Lieutenant Governor.


[Mr. Speaker leaves the Chair]

[His Honour the Lieutenant Governor takes the Chair]

SERGEANT-AT-ARMS: It is the wish of His Honour the Lieutenant Governor that all present be seated.


Mr. Speaker and Members of the Honourable House of Assembly:

Good morning, everyone.

First of all, I bring greetings to all Members of the House of Assembly in one of my earliest acts as Newfoundland and Labrador's new Lieutenant Governor.

May I take a moment to express our collective appreciation to the hon. John Crosbie and Jane Furneaux Crosbie for their service during the past five years. As their successors in these roles, Patricia and I look forward to our visits to the House of Assembly and our many other responsibilities in the years to come.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!


Mr. Speaker and Members of the Honourable House of Assembly:

The First Session of the Forty-Seventh General Assembly of the Honourable House of Assembly is about to be prorogued, but before releasing you from your duties, I wish to express gratitude for the careful and sympathetic attention that you have given to important matters brought to you by My Ministers.

During this Session, Members passed 56 pieces of legislation along with resolutions respecting appointments of the Auditor General, the Information and Privacy Commissioner, the Clerk of the House of Assembly, the Citizens' Representative, the Sergeant-at-Arms, and members of the Members' Compensation Review Committee.

Mr. Speaker and Members of the Honourable House of Assembly:

The House considered at length and passed two bills associated with the Muskrat Falls Project.

Bill 60 was a new Act Respecting the Use And Expropriation Of Land For The Purpose Of The Muskrat Falls Project.

Bill 61 amended The Electrical Power Control Act, 1994, The Energy Corporation Act And The Hydro Corporation Act, 2007 to advance implementation of this historic hydro project.

The House also enabled the implementation of a Labrador industrial rate policy by passing a Bill to amend the Churchill Falls (Labrador) Corporation Limited (Lease) Act, 1961 and the Electrical Power Control Act, 1994.

Mr. Speaker and Members of the Honourable House of Assembly:

A significant piece of legislation amended the Fatalities Investigation Act. Firstly, it will establish a Child Death Review Committee to review the facts and circumstances of all deaths within its mandate and to report its findings to the minister; secondly, it will require the minister to provide a copy of the report of the committee to the Child and Youth Advocate; and thirdly, it will empower the committee to recommend to the minister that a public inquiry be held where necessary, for the protection of the public interest or in the interest of public safety.

My Government brought forward a new Service Animal Act to replace the Blind Persons' Rights Act, expanding the definition of trained service animals and extending provisions to all persons with disabilities who are dependent on a service animal.

My Government brought forward an amendment to the Pharmaceutical Services Act to provide for a new generic drug pricing model. The House also passed a new Practice of Optometry Act and a new Act to Regulate The Practice Of Pharmacy, along with amendments to the Psychologists Act, 2005; the Hearing Aid Practitioners Act; the Health Research Ethics Authority Act; the Medical Care Insurance Act, 1999; and The Mental Health Care and Treatment Act.

My Government brought forward a new Personal Services Act that, among other measures, will restrict access to tanning and other personal services to persons over the age of n19 years; restrict access to tattooing and body piercing to persons over the age of 16 years unless written consent of a parent or guardian is given; require registration of personal services establishments and tanning facilities; ensure clients are provided with information about risks and after-care; and establish sanitation standards.

Amendments were also brought forward to the Family Violence Protection Act, the Interjurisdictional Support Orders Act; the Legal Aid Act; the Provincial Offences Act; the Young Persons Offences Act; the Provincial Court Act, 1991; the Obsolete Actions Act; the Animal Health and Protection Act; and, in two separate bills, the Enduring Powers of Attorney Act.

Mr. Speaker and Members of the Honourable House of Assembly:

The Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Act was amended so coverage can be provided to volunteers engaged in search and rescue activities and auxiliary policing activity services.

The Labour Relations Act was amended to reflect the recommendations of the Voisey's Bay Industrial Inquiry Commission.

The Aquaculture Act was amended to safeguard the integrity of this important industry.

The House passed a bill to amend the Highway Traffic Act to include new provisions respecting the seizure, impoundment, and disposal of motor vehicles that are dangerous or unfit for use.

The House amended the Motorized Snow Vehicles and All-Terrain Vehicles Act to enable peace officers to establish check stations.

The House made changes to the Works, Services and Transportation Act regarding the installation, maintenance, and removal of signs on, over, or adjacent to provincial highways.

To strike the right balance between access to information and the protection of privacy, My Government brought forward An Act to Amend the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act. This legislation implemented the majority of the legislative recommendations of the Cummings report, a regular evaluation of the ATIPP Act required by law.

To further enhance transparency and accountability, the House also passed a bill to amend various acts of the Province respecting annual reports. These new provisions require that annual reports be published on-line, either by the Minister of Health and Community Services or by the regulatory body.

Among the other legislative measures enacted during this session were two bills to amend the Consumer Protection and Business Practices Act and two bills to amend the Public Service Collective Bargaining Act, as well as bills to amend the Public Service Pensions Act, 1991; the Pension Benefits Act, 1997; the Uniformed Services Pensions Act, 2012; the Rail Service Act, 2009; the Liquor Control Act; the Registration of Deeds Act, 2009; the Schools Act, 1997; the Student Financial Assistance Act; the Labrador Inuit Land Claims Agreement Act; the Appointments to Boards, Councils and Tribunals Amendment Act; and the Trust and Loan Corporations Act.

The House passed a new Regional Services Boards Acts that, among other things, will enable the minister to establish wards and empower a board to operate waste management systems. It also passed amendments to the Municipal Affairs Act; the Municipalities Act, 1999 and Urban and Rural Planning Act, 2000; the City of St. John's Act and the City of St. John's Municipal Taxation Act; the Assessment Act, 2006; and the Revenue Administration Act.

Mr. Speaker and Members of the Honourable House of Assembly:

My Government brought forward an amendment to the Income Tax Act, 2000, to add a provision respecting a volunteer firefighters' tax credit, effective January 1, 2011.

The House passed two Interim Supply Acts to meet the Province's fiscal obligations and a Supply Act.

I thank you for the large measure of Supply you have granted. I assure you the appropriations you have granted have been and will be expended by My Ministers with care and efficiency.

It is my pleasure that the First Session of the Forty-Seventh General Assembly now be prorogued and it is prorogued accordingly.


[His Honour the Lieutenant Governor leaves the Chamber]

[Mr. Speaker returns to the Chair]

MR. SPEAKER: Please be seated.

Pursuant to the Speech by His Honour, this House now stands prorogued.