Dawson City, Yukon

Wednesday, March 23, 1988 - 3:00 p.m.

Speaker: I will now call the House to order.

Tribute: John L. Phelps

Hon. Mr. Penikett: It is with regret that I rise to note the death yesterday of John L. Phelps, a former Member of this House, a man who represented the district of Whitehorse East from 1952 until 1958. John Phelps was president of Yukon Electrical Company and Yukon Hydro Company and was a very strong promoter of Yukon home rule and a very strong champion of the rights of this Legislature throughout his years as a Member.

Meeting here today, it would be inappropriate for me not to note that John Phelps was the son of Willard Phelps, the very first Government Leader of the Yukon Territory who took that office here in this room in 1909 and who served this Chamber for a total of 23 years. As all present know, his namesake now serves this Legislature as the Leader of the Opposition, and it is with sadness that we recognize that he cannot be with us here today because of the passing of his father, because I know he would have very much appreciated the opportunity to share with us this celebration of our traditions in which three generations of his family have been a part.

From this side of the House, and I am sure from all Members, our sympathies go out to the family. We mourn the passing of John L. Phelps, a former Member  of this Chamber.

Mr. Lang: As the Government Leader has noted, it was a tragic accident that has befallen Mr. John Phelps. John Phelps’ contribution to Yukon is going to be carried on for many years to come. He not only was a Member of the Legislature and sat in these Chambers during the last sitting in Dawson City prior to the Legislature of the day moving to Whitehorse, but he also was a professional engineer. He was a founding member and the president of the Society for Professional Engineers, which is an organization that carries on today.

He was also very much involved in the development of hydro and very much a proponent of development in Yukon. He and a well respected pioneer, John Scott, built the McIntyre/Porter Creek hydro facility that we, in Whitehorse, take for granted.

The grandfather, Willard LeRoy Phelps, served the public of Yukon, as the Government Leader has noted, for 23 years. I want to say on behalf of Mr. Phelps, who is understandably absent today, that he very much wanted to be here because he is the only one in Yukon who can honestly say his grandfather served the public in the Legislature, his father served in the Legislature, as well as he, himself.

On behalf of his party, his colleagues and the people of the territory, we extend our condolences to Jean Phelps, Mr. Phelps and his family in the difficult times ahead for them.

Mr. McLachlan: I, too, rise to express my sense of shock at the loss of the individual who was truly a pioneer in the Yukon business and political community. John Phelps first ran for election in the Legislature in 1952 and represented the riding of Whitehorse East. He served in that capacity and was one of the few last surviving Members from the 1952 Legislature that sat here in Dawson City.

His contributions to the business community in the field of electrical power generation will be remembered by many for years to come. My deepest and most heartfelt condolences go out to the family today for all of Yukon indeed shares the loss today.


Clerk: It is the will and pleasure of the Commissioner, in his capacity as Lieutenant Governor, that the Fourth Session of the Twenty-sixth Legislature be now prorogued, and the Fourth Session of the Twenty-sixth Legislature is accordingly prorogued.

Opening of the Fifth Session of the 26th Legislature

Speaker: I have received communication from the Commissioner in his capacity as Lieutenant Governor stating that he would open the Fifth Session of the Twenty-sixth Legislature in the City of Dawson at 3:00 p.m. today, Wednesday, the 23rd day of March, 1988.

We are now prepared to hear the Speech from the Throne.

Commissioner Ken McKinnon enters the Chamber accompanied by his Aides-de-Camp.

Mr. McKinnon: Mr. Speaker and hon. Members, I am pleased to welcome you to the Fifth Session of the Twenty-sixth Legislative Assembly of the Yukon.

For the elected representatives of the Yukon to meet once again in this building, after an absence of many years, is a great honour. It is also an affirmation. Meeting in this gracious building acknowledges the varied richness of our past and our commitment to building a future of economic strength and social justice.

Take a moment and look about you. Is it not admirable the way our tradespeople, using their fine skills and their knowledge of new building techniques, have restored the building’s facade, its stairways and meeting rooms? Is it not a proud reflection of who we are and also of what we, with our conviction and energy, can do? I like to think that if the building’s original architect, T.W. Fuller, were to join us today, he would be pleased to see how we have not only remained faithful to his original vision but, using new technologies, have also built on it.

It is a particular pleasure and honour for me to welcome also to this Chamber today as our guests, nine legislators from our great friend and neighbour, the State of Alaska. One needs to go no further than this Chamber to explain and understand the very strong and historical bonds between us. The Government Leader’s family and my family are closely related to the people of Northway, Alaska. The Speaker of this Assembly is of Tlinget heritage whose friends and family are along the Alaskan Panhandle. I am sure that the Member from Fort Yukon in the Alaska Assembly and the Member for Old Crow from this Assembly often are busy catching up on news of their relatives. Of course the Opposition House Leader picked an Alaskan beauty from the University of Alaska at Fairbanks when he was student there. The MLA for Whitehorse Riverdale North also brought his wife across the border from Fairbanks.

So having just returned from the Arctic Winter Games, let me say that these ties are as strong as always. I bid you a heartfelt welcome on behalf of all of the people of the Yukon Territory.

Today and in the days that follow, we will continue to build on the aspirations of those Yukoners in 1908 who formed our first fully-elected territorial council. As we open this session 80 years later, as we press forward with our economic and social initiatives, we can be proud of what they began and what we, with a deep sense of responsibility, continue today.

When my government came to office just three years ago, it faced one challenge that loomed above all others: to rebuild our failing economy and to recover thousands of lost jobs. Those jobs have now been regained. Our economy is robust. The forecast for 1988 predicts growth of eight to ten percent. This comes on top of the 20 percent growth last year and the even greater growth the year before. This means that, for the third year in a row, the Yukon will have the highest growth rate in Canada. Having recovered the ground we lost in the early 1980s, we are now going on to reach new levels of population and employment.

There is much credit to go around. Businesses large and small have responded to new opportunities with optimism and vigour. Workers, homeowners and consumers have shown renewed faith in the Yukon’s future. The federal government has responded generously to the Yukon’s economic plight, working cooperatively to help reopen the Faro mine and to transfer the Yukon assets of the Northern Canada Power Commission. Also, we recently reached a new agreement with the federal government that has renewed formula financing for the Yukon.

For its part, the territorial government has carefully invested its increased revenues. Firstly, most of the new monies have been put into building the territory, into capital projects rather than into operating programs that may not be sustainable in future years. Secondly, a constant effort has been made to put as much money as possible into rebuilding and diversifying our economy. We have assisted not only the Yukon’s established industries of mining, tourism, construction and services, but also such emerging industries as forestry, energy, manufacturing and food production. For example, my government has taken the following major economic initiatives:

The mine at Faro has been reopened, with millions of dollars invested in roads, energy, housing and community services.

More than $4 million is being invested through the Yukon Development Corporation to reopen and rebuild Hyland Forest Products, employing more than 200 workers in Watson Lake.

The Regional Resources Roads Program has been allocated $7.5 million over three years to help the mining, forestry and fishing industries.

More than $30 million has been spent upgrading the Klondike and other highways.

The new Mineral Exploration Incentives and Prospectors Assistance Programs and the Economic Development Agreement have invested millions in the developing of future mines.

Similarly, more than $3 million has been spent under the Economic Development Agreement and other programs to upgrade our tourism facilities.

Tends of millions of dollars have been invested in the Yukon Energy Corporation to gain local control of energy production.

The Business Development Office has provided one-stop access to millions of dollars in small business support, including a loan fund increased sixfold to more than $3 million.

More than $2 million was invested in mining, forestry, farming, fishing, trapping and other industries in 1987/88 by the elimination of the off-road fuel tax.

All of these initiatives have contributed to our current prosperity. However, we must not let our present good health distract us from the challenge of maintaining it. We must continue to diversify and strengthen our economy. We must plan for sustainable growth and greater self-reliance, and we must use our new economic means to continue building a more just and more equitable society.

This is precisely what my government has been helping Yukoners to do. The Yukon 2000 process began in 1986 with a workshop in Faro, the symbol of both the Yukon’s strength and its vulnerability. During that first meeting, Yukoners said that they wanted this government, indeed the whole territory, to work together to ensure that all Yukoners have the option to stay, greater control over the future, an acceptable quality of life and equality.

From that first historic meeting, Yukon 2000 has brought together Yukoners from all regions and all walks of life, people who have a common stake in our economic well-being, but who seldom have a common forum for sharing their ideas and concerns.

Out of these has come a democratic vision of our future, perhaps best summarized near the end of the process with the publication of "The Things That Matter". It described many of the concerns and interests that permeate and give shape to our Yukon identity, themes that might not always be thought of as economic. Because of Yukon 2000, we discovered that the things that matter to us are self-reliance, participation, community development, wise use of resources, a mix of economies, diversification, flexibility and more local benefits.

Following publication of "The Things That Matter", hundreds of ideas have been studied, grouped, ranked and explained. This combined wisdom from literally hundreds of Yukoners has become the basis of a Yukon Economic Strategy that will guide us into the next century. During this sitting, the Minister of Economic Development will present this strategy to the House.

In broad terms, it will address the general need to develop our natural, human, financial and technical resources, while meeting the specific needs of each industry. I would like to highlight for the hon. Members some of the areas in which the government will act immediately on the ideas raised in Yukon 2000.

A Community Development Fund will be created to integrate our efforts to support local growth.

A Business Development Fund will consolidate many economic programs developed to meet particular needs.

A Development Assessment Process will be created to streamline the regulatory labyrinth often faced by major projects.

A Yukon Conservation Strategy will be developed to guide the sustainable use of our resources.

Affordable, sustainable energy will be provided by reshaping the power rates inherited from the federal government and by developing local energy sources such as hydro and wood.

A Home Ownership Program will help Yukoners purchase good quality housing at reasonable prices.

A Yukon Tourism Action Plan will help our industry seek new markets and develop new facilities.

Coordinated marketing support will increase the sales of Yukon exports and import substitutes.

The placer mining industry’s increasingly complex regulatory and financial needs will be supported.

Subsistence and other wildlife uses vital to our rural communities will be recognized in all government processes and in new programs such as fur enhancement and apprenticeships to pass on subsistence skills.

Clearly, these and the dozens of other actions that form the Yukon Economic Strategy constitute an especially far-reaching agenda. It is, therefore, also a long-term one. We cannot diversify overnight. While some actions were taken last year as urgent needs identified by the Yukon 2000 process, other actions will begin this year, and still more will be phased in as earlier ones are completed.

Yukoners will, however, continue to see real and lasting improvement in our economy and in our society this year and next. For example, the opening of new gold mines near Ross River, Carcross and Carmacks will strengthen our senior industry, mining. We will also see the results of my government’s development of underlying human and technical resources and support for diversification into new areas like forestry and manufacturing.

The Yukon economy that exists at the end of this decade will be very different from the one that began the decade. Stronger, more stable, more diverse and more locally controlled: this is the economy that so many of our distinguished predecessors discussed and debated in the rooms and hallways of this dignified building.

This year, my government will continue to act decisively to support Yukon industry. I am pleased to inform Members that the Hyland Forest Products operation in Watson Lake is rebuilding successfully, thus ensuring many local jobs and a viable source of Yukon-made building materials. We shall continue to refurbish the plant and develop its energy potential before selling it.

The successful Regional Resource Roads Program will be broadened to include air and water transportation needs such as docks and landing pads. The new value-added policy for government construction contracts includes incentives for the use of Yukon materials and products and for the use of local labour in areas of high unemployment. Such a policy is becoming increasingly important in the emerging trade environments of Canada and North America.

Meanwhile, my government will be negotiating with the federal government a new joint Economic Development Agreement, with subagreements for mining, tourism, renewable resources, small business, community planning and other areas vital to a young frontier economy, and this government will continue to strive for one-window access to both federal and territorial economic funds.

The Klondike Gold Rush - that formative part of our past that has drawn us here today - is also one of the two keystones of our tourist industry. The other, of course, is the Alaska Highway. We will soon be celebrating the 100th anniversary of the first, and the 50th anniversary of the second. A Yukon Anniversaries Commission has been formed to plan major celebrations of these important events. For the next two years, the Yukon and federal governments will provide core funding so that this commission can carry out its work. These celebrations will benefit us in many ways. They will not only increase our understanding of who we are, but will also bring millions of dollars in revenues to our tourism and services industries.

The Minister of Renewable Resources is taking steps to improve the trapping and agriculture industries. This year will see a Fur Enhancement Program to improve the productivity of the hundreds of trappers in the Yukon, continued support of Indigenous Survival International to fight the anti-fur campaign politically and commercially, a new inspection policy and program that will enable Yukon ranchers to sell their meat to wholesale and retail outlets, and a forage study of native grasses to determine their potential for agricultural grazing.

Also in support of the Yukon’s fledgling farm industry, the Ministers of Renewable Resources and of Community and Transportation Services will develop an agricultural land policy to rationalize the allocation of the limited good farmland in the territory.

Many of my government’s actions are designed to support our communities’ efforts to establish viable bases for economic development. It recognizes, for example, the importance of affordable, dependable energy sources to our communities’ well-being. As a first step, the Yukon Development Corporation will rebuild the Mayo hydro dam over the next two years. This will ensure a continued supply of power for the communities and industries of that region.

Similarly, the development corporation has been studying energy options for Dawson City, including a hydro plant on the nearby North Klondike River. The minister responsible for the corporation expects to announce during this session proposals for lower-cost power for this region. In other regions of the territory, the government is helping communities develop local energy sources, including wood-chip plants in Whitehorse, Faro, Haines Junction and Watson Lake, and waste heat recycling at the Watson Lake diesel generator plant.

My government also is prepared to act this year on the result of the inquiry into the cost of petroleum products in the Yukon. All these actions - on hydro, on wood, on recycling, on gas and oil - have two common goals: increasing supplies and lowering costs of energy for Yukon communities and businesses.

Another resources, one that many people who live in larger centres take for granted, is limited or non-existent in many of our communities. Only Whitehorse, Dawson City and Watson Lake have permanent banks. Some communities have no banking services at all. During the past two years, my government has worked with the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce to extend services to Faro and Mayo. In the coming year, the government will pilot a project designed to support basic banking services in a rural community through a local operator. Depending on the success of this pilot project, the Minister of Finance hopes to extend similar services to other communities.

Hon. Members, my government is proud of its record of support for rural communities, a record of schools and roads, of block funding and the Local Employment Opportunities Program, of banking services and economic projects. My government’s firm resolve to help our communities develop, to further improve their economic bases and community services, will remain a priority in the years ahead.

An expanding economy creates new needs, needs quite different from those of the declining economy of three years ago. A growing, prosperous population needs more schools, training, child care and housing. My government is responding to these new challenges vigorously.

The Minister of Community and Transportation Services is now ready, after consultation with the Association of Yukon Communities, to introduce amendments to the Municipal Act and the Municipal Finance Act. These changes will improve community administration and revise the operating grants formula.

Education, recreation and business: these are just some facets of community life that require improved communication services. My government will act to meet this need by creating a Yukon-wide communications policy and a communications unit within the Department of Community and Transportation Services. Its immediate mandate will be to ensure better telephone and television services and to intervene in national regulatory processes on behalf of Yukon community interests.

Home ownership has long been a major goal for most Canadians, yet today many Yukoners are finding it difficult to buy a house, especially their first. In response to their needs, the Yukon Housing Corporation will, in the year ahead, announce a Home Ownership Program to reduce the cost of construction and make it easier to buy housing, especially in rural areas.

Land is the basis of home ownership, and my government will continue to make both urban and rural land available to Yukoners. In Whitehorse, where there is the largest housing demand, phase one of the Granger Subdivision will create 113 new single-family residential lots and four new apartment sites. Another 45 country residential lots will be developed in phase two of the Mary Lake Subdivision, and 26 homestead lots will be made available in the Robinson area. Also, a total of 60 residential lots will be released in three rural communities: Watson Lake, Dawson City and Haines Junction. As well, ministers will continue working with land claim negotiators to release other lands for homes, businesses, farms and public works, and I am pleased to announce that a regional building inspector will soon be situated here in Dawson City to support construction in this region.

Crime prevention in our rural communities remains a concern of the Minister of Justice. In Teslin, a crime prevention worker will continue to help the youth of that community. In Old Crow, funding will be provided for a community justice coordinator to work with the Vuntut Gwitchin Tribal Justice Council established last year. For the disproportionate number of aboriginal people in the prison system, an institutional liaison officer will provide counselling, spiritual and cultural programs, and planning for release. I am also pleased to note that my government intends to continue the Victim/Witness Program and to create a support group for victims of spousal assault.

Improving social services in rural communities also remains a priority with my Minister of Health and Human Resources. During the coming year, she will extend the Family Support Program, pilot a project to strengthen family counselling in Watson Lake, review vocational rehabilitation needs in rural communities, transfer a social worker position to Carmacks, review community health services with the federal government, expand child care services in Faro and Watson Lake, and revise social assistance rates to reflect current costs for food, shelter and clothing.

The increasing number of families with only one parent, or with two working parents, makes child care a pressing social and economic issue. Most Yukon adults are in the child-rearing years and, whether by choice or necessity, two of every three women in the Yukon work outside the home.

We must continue to address the child care needs of working parents. As Members will recall, the Minister of Health and Human Resources has, over the past three years, significantly increased the government’s support of child care. Operating grants have been increased. Capital grants for child care centres have been introduced, and both have been extended to licensed family day homes. These, together with increased subsidies for needy working parents, nearly doubled this government’s funding for child care last year.

The first step towards a comprehensive Yukon child care plan is imminent. The government will soon publish a green paper that will outline the basic principles and issues it believes must be addressed. This spring, a three-member consultation panel will then begin hearing the ideas and opinions of citizens across the Yukon. Based on these consultations, my government will work with parents, private operators and community groups to develop a child care system that meets Yukoners’ needs.

One of the most important assets of any economy is a well-educated, well-trained work force. Educating and training Yukoners in the Yukon remains a priority of my government. This year, the Yukon will take its two biggest steps ever towards this goal with the opening of the new Yukon College campus and the passing of the College Governance Act. Together, these two steps will transform postsecondary education as we have known it in the Yukon.

If our college is to contribute as fully as possible to the robust and challenging future that lies ahead of us, we must answer a number of questions. How can our college best serve its community? How can our citizens participate in directing and shaping it? What can we do to ensure our college meets the needs of all Yukoners and not just those who live in our larger centres? These are the questions to which the government’s recent White Paper on College Governance sought answers. The Minister of Education is now ready to table a College Governance Act to ensure public participation in the direction of the college.

An important feature of the new college campus will be a much-needed student residence. The lack of such a facility would be a major deterrent to rural students seeking to advance their education or improve their technical skills at the college. The new facility will include space for up to 56 single students and eight families.

Of course, a new building is only as good as what goes on inside it. In what will be the first of many future innovations, the college will soon begin developing such programs as early childhood education and community administration.

The minister will also introduce a new Arts Centre Act for the operation of the theatre complex at the college site. This has been developed in extensive consultation with the arts community and, as with the college itself, is intended to give this facility arms-length independence from the government.

Many of the coming changes for the Yukon will be in areas we can scarcely imagine today. So that we in the Yukon can fully benefit from local, national and international research, my government expects to sign a science and technology agreement soon with the federal government. This strategy will promote understanding of science and technology, speed the acquisition and use of relevant technologies, increases the Yukon’s capacity for local research and guide our transition to a more knowledge-based economy and society.

Last year, my government received the Kwiya Report of the Joint Commission on Indian Education and Training, co-sponsored by the Government of Yukon and the Council for Yukon Indians. My ministers are considering carefully the past failures and future opportunities for the Yukon education system to meet the needs of Indian students. Already, the Minister of Education is taking steps towards making Indian culture a more meaningful part of our schools and of our society.

A cross-cultural education program is to be developed at Yukon College, to offer short courses and workshops to a wide variety of people working in cross-cultural settings. As well, a coordinator of northern and native curriculum will be hired by our Public Schools Branch to help communities develop courses suitable for their students. I am also pleased to announce that we will be funding positions for a native programs coordinator for the Libraries and Archives Branch and a Southern Tutchone instructor trainee for the Yukon Native Languages Centre. These are practical steps towards making our institutions, particularly our schools, more responsive to native needs and aspirations.

Yukon College and Indian education are two of the most pressing educational concerns my government is acting on now. As well, my Ministers recognize that the overall educational system needs a comprehensive overhaul in areas such as educational philosophy, community control, rights of access, and teacher training. As hon. Members are aware, the Education Task Force has now completed its work. The Minister of Education and his officials are studying the many recommendations in this report, and he expects to bring forth a package of reforms later in this session.

Aboriginal land claims remain the most urgent public issue facing the Yukon. After three years of careful preparation, we are confident of major progress this year.

As Members will recall, last fall when this government urged the federal Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development to reactivate land claims, he asked for an agreement-in-principle by this summer. In turn, the Council for Yukon Indians has called for a preliminary agreement this spring. I am pleased to report that negotiations are proceeding well, with all parties working in a spirit of cooperation and goodwill. If we achieve an overall agreement in the months ahead, the next step for our negotiators will be to complete settlements on a band-by-band basis as quickly as possible.

When negotiations resumed last fall, my government committed resources from several departments. This support will be increased in the year ahead to reach an overall agreement-in-principle and to begin working out settlements with the individual bands. Additional personnel will be dedicated from the departments of Community and Transportation Services, Economic Development, Finance and Renewable Resources, as well as the Public Service Commission.

Despite the impending settlement of land claims, the overall constitutional status of the Yukon remains in doubt. As the Meech Lake Accord so clearly showed, we cannot count on other, southern forces to protect our interests. Indeed, we must be prepared for the possibility that our interests may be sacrificed to others’. As the eminent Canadian geographer, Louis-Edmond Hamelin, once asked, "Is it not true to say that the major problem of the North, is the South?"

We in the north must, therefore, continue to be vigilant. My Ministers will continue to oppose those sections of the Meech Lake Accord that undermine what we in the north have accomplished and what we hope to accomplish. We will do what we can wherever we can: in the courts, in the provincial legislatures, in conferences of first ministers, and in the media. This is a cause shared by both sides of this House, and my government will continue to seek the support of the Opposition parties. Already, our solidarity on this important issue has had a noticeable impact in federal and provincial forums. We must continue this fight, first and foremost, as northerners.

But we must do more than just tell other Canadians what we do not want to become. We must ask ourselves, as our predecessors no doubt asked themselves in this very building 80 years ago, what do we want to become? What is our vision for this northern community? What is the future towards which we as a society with to strive?

My government believes it is time for Yukoners to determine their own future. During this session of the Legislature, the Government Leader will present to Yukoners a green paper on constitutional development. This paper will define the issues facing us and lay out the options available to us, and can form the basis of a consultation process for all Yukon people.

Given our economic health and the imminent settlement of aboriginal land claims, is it not fitting that all Yukoners have an opportunity to restake their collective political claim in the Yukon and in Canada?

If the Meech Lake Accord has created uncertainty about the Yukon’s constitutional future, it has also made the current ministers much more sensitive to the constitutional challenges of devolution. My government has been successful in assuming responsibility for such important agencies as the Northern Canada Power Commission and the Industrial and Regional Development Program. More transfers are expected. In order to ensure that these occur smoothly and to the benefit of the Yukon, the central agencies of this government will devote even more of their time and resources in the year ahead to devolution.

However, our experience with both Meech Lake and devolution indicates that the Yukon government is too often being asked to run programs remaining under federal jurisdiction. My Ministers are reluctant to accept these responsibilities without the accompanying authority and resources.

In the coming months, this government will test the sincerity and commitment of the federal government to the continued political maturation of the Yukon. My Ministers have a long and ambitious list of responsibilities they believe Yukoners can manage. The most important are the management of our resources: fisheries, forestry, lands, minerals, and oil and gas. To control these would be to take a major step towards genuine autonomy.

Just as some contentious issues exist between governments, so others can bring us together. One of these is the fate of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. As many Yukoners are aware, oil companies are proposing to drill on the Alaska range of the Porcupine caribou herd. This is an issue on which the Yukon and Canadian governments have presented a solid front. Quite simply, the caribou represent the very life of aboriginal people in the Yukon and the Northwest Territories. If this ageless resource is harmed, what then becomes of the people? My Ministers will, therefore, continue to vigorously protect our northern caribou range from adverse industrial development.

Earlier this month, the Government Leader discussed these and other issues with the Governor of Alaska and the Premier of British Columbia at the trilateral meeting in Fairbanks. This meeting resulted in cooperative steps being taken in education and energy, tourism and transportation.

This year marks the beginning of the Yukon Land Use Planning process with the federal government. This is a long-term effort to consult all land users, develop regional land use plans, minimize land use conflicts, and speed up future land use applications. This represents a large step in trust and goodwill among the two governments and Indian organizations. If it works as well as expected, it will bode well for use of our lands following the settlement of land claims. The Minister of Renewable Resources expects to see the first of seven regional commissions set up this year.

Another area of intergovernmental cooperation involves motor transport reform. This year the Yukon will, with the rest of Canada, implement the National Safety Code for commercial carriers. This joint federal-provincial-territorial program will reduce regulations and encourage competition and innovation, while still protecting public interests. To formalize the Yukon’s participation, the Minister of Community and Transportation Services will introduce a new Motor Transport Act during this legislative sitting.

Hon. Members, as I have noted, my government intends to present a number of bills to the House in this session.  These include An Act to Amend the Insurance Act, An Act to Amend the Financial Agreement Act, An Act to Amend the Legal Services Society Act, An Act to Amend the Motor Vehicles Act, An Act to Amend the Municipal Act, An Act to Amend the Municipal Finance Act, An Act to Amend the Occupational Health and Safety Act, An Act to Repeal the Dawson Utilities Replacement Act, Arts Centre Act, College Governance Act, Mental Health Act, Motor Transport Act.

As well, the government will be asking the Legislature to approve several money bills, including the year-end supplementary expenditures for 1987/88 and supplementary capital expenditures for 1988/89. The operating budget for 1988/89 will be introduced before the fiscal year end, along with the usual interim supply bill. In introducing the budgets for each of their departments, the Ministers will describe in detail how these spending measures are intended to enrich our economy and our communities in the year ahead.

Hon. Members, as I have attempted to show today, my government has effectively faced the challenges it took up three years ago. Throughout the territory there is ample evidence of renewal and prosperity. Again, I ask you to look at this grand building and the robust community of which it is a part. They speak eloquently, not only of the accomplishments of the past, but also of the promise of our future. Hon. Members, much has been done.

Commissioner Ken McKinnon leaves the Chambers, accompanied by his Aides-de-Camp

Speaker: I will now call the House to order.

We will commence with prayers.



Bill No. 1: Introduction and First Reading

Hon. Mr. Penikett: I move that a Bill entitled, An Act to Perpetuate A Certain Ancient Right be now introduced and read a first time.

Speaker: It has been moved by the hon. Government Leader that a Bill entitled, An Act to Perpetuate A Certain Ancient Right be now introduced and read a first time.

Motion agreed to


Speaker: I would like to inform the Assembly at this time that in order to prevent mistakes I have obtained a copy of the Speech from the Throne, which I will now lay on the table.


Hon. Mr. Penikett: I move that the Speech from the Throne be considered on the day following.

Speaker: It has been moved by the hon. Government Leader that the Speech from the Throne be considered on the day following. Are you agreed?

Motion agreed to

Hon. Mr. Porter: I wish to inform the House that pursuant to Standing Order 26, consideration of a motion for an address in reply to the Speech from the Throne shall take place on Thursday, March 24, 1988.

Speaker: May I have your further pleasure.

Hon. Mr. Porter: I move that the House do now adjourn.

Motion agreed to

Speaker: Before adjourning the House, I would like to invite all present to a public reception that will take place immediately in the coffee shop area of this building.

This House now stands adjourned until 1:30 p.m. tomorrow.

The House adjourned at 3:45 p.m.

The following Sessional Paper was tabled March 23, 1988:


Speech from the Throne (Speaker)