The Liberal government is trying to pass an Emergency funding bill in the House of Commons that would allow them the flexibility to provide relief funds to the Provinces more easily and quickly. Seems pretty straightforward, except that the opposition government has some concerns about the language of the bill.
Conservatives have raised issue with part 2 of the bill, which would allow the government to make financial decisions for 21 months without parliamentary approval. The Liberal Government agreed to drop that portion of the bill, saying that the government needs to get assistance to Canadians as quickly as possible.
The remaining concern from the opposition seems to be mostly about phrasing being too general and granting too much power to the finance minister, allowing him to access “all money required to do anything, including making payments to provinces and territories.”
From what I can understand of the situation, the Government wants the flexibility to respond and provide aid easily and the opposition wants to maintain parliamentary oversight. The conservatives say they aren’t opposed to the proposed financial aid measures in the bill, they are opposed to granting the cabinet powers that are not typically seen in our parliamentary system.
This proposed aid package includes:
An approximate $2 Billion boost to the CCB in extra support for families
An emergency care benefit of up to $900 bi weekly for up to 15 weeks for workers who are unable to work but don’t qualify for EI including those who are self employed or who don’t qualify for paid sick leave. That measure could see up to $10 Billion in relief dispersed to Canadians.
The emergency support benefit, which could provide up to $5 Billion in support for workers who aren’t eligible for EI.
$305 Million for new Indigenous community support fund to address immediate needs in FN, Inuit and Metis communities.
6 month stay on student loan payments and interest
Doubling the homeless care program
an extension of the tax filing deadline to June 1
A policy change that would allow taxpayers to defer their payments until after august 31 for payments due between today and December.
Today Scott Reid, MP, decided to head to the HoC to block the unanimous consent needed to pass the proposed Aid package in the House.
Mr. Reid chose to ignore requests from his party whip that all MPs stay away from the house of commons claiming “procedural concerns”, although upon reading his statement I can see nothing other than partisan posturing and a desire to misrepresent the actions of our government.
In short, Scott Reid is a Dick and political games are delaying emergency financial assistance from reaching Canadians. I’m ticked off.