33rd CPA Canadian Regional Seminar
Despite all the recent provincial
and territorial elections, the 33rd Canadian Regional Seminar of
the CPA was held in Fredericton from November 3-6, 2011.
Twenty-one legislators from the Senate and from nine provinces
and territories attended.
The seminar was hosted by Speaker
Dale Graham of New Brunswick. Other Speakers present
included Bill Barisoff
of British Columbia, Gordie
Gosse of Nova Scotia,
Hunter Tootoo of Nunavut and
Steve Peters of Ontario.
The first session on Decorum in the House was led by Speaker
Peters. Fatima Houda-Pepin
of Québec presented a paper in the second session entitled: Do
Political Parties Promote Democracy and Parliamentary Freedom of
Expression? She looked at recent changes in the Québec Standing
Orders which define the confidence convention thereby allowing
freer discussion and voting on matters that are not defined as
The third session featured a presentation by
Linda Reid of British Columbia who looked at the
changes in legislatures over her twenty years in public life.
She focused particularly on the role of women and on the
participation of youth.
The fourth session was on the Role of the Independent member and
featured a presentation by
Vicki Huntington of British Columbia who is one of the
rare members to have been elected and remain as an independent
member of the legislature.
The final session was a roundtable on Managing the House in
Fiscally Challenging Times. It was chaired by Speaker Graham.
Several delegates discussed what their legislatures were doing
to control expenses.
In addition to the business sessions there was lobster dinner at
the Fredericton Golf Club and an opening and closing dinner
hosted by Speaker Graham. Delegates thanked the Speaker and the
conference co-ordinator Lori
Catalli Sonier, for a very productive seminar.
Ninth Canadian Parliamentary Seminar, Ottawa
Canadian Parliamentary Seminar organized by the Canadian Branch
of the CPA was held in Ottawa from October 16-22. The host was
Russ Hiebert, Chair of the Canadian Branch. International
delegates attended from Kenya, Zanzibar, Sri Lanka, Singapore,
United Kingdom, Wales, India, New South Wales, and Khyber
The Canadian Region was represented by delegates from Prince
Edward Island and New Brunswick. CPA Headquarters was
represented by David Broom,
Director of Finance and Administration who spoke about the
Commonwealth and the Role of the CPA.
Other topics and speakers were:
The Operation of the Parliament of Canada
Gary O’Brien, Clerk of the Senate
Audrey O’Brien, Clerk of the House
The Canadian Political Scene
Joan Fraser, Senator
Michael Chong, MP
David Smith, Senator
Patrick Brown, MP
The Role of Party Caucuses
Guy Lauzon, MP
Joe Comartin, MP
Parliamentary Committees: What Works and What Does Not Work
Raynell Andreychuk, Senator
Joe Preston, MP
Bev Shipley, MP
Brian Masse, MP
Democracy, Human Rights and Development
John McKay, MP
Have the Media taken over the Representational Job of
Dean Allison, MP
Richard Cléroux, Parliamentary Press
Engaging Citizens: Resources and Tools
Dr. Carolyn Bennett,
Representing Pluralistic Constitutencies
Tim Uppal, Minister of State
Devinder Shory, MP
Tim Powers, Summa Strategies
Don Boudria, Senior Counsellor, Hill
& Knowlton Canada
The final morning of the seminar was devoted to topics suggested
by the delegates. Among these were: Implications of Climate
Change and the Role of Parliamentarians (Dr. Sudarshini
Fernandopulle, Sri Lanka); Unifying Diverse Views and
Expectations (Dr. Muhammad
Faishal Ibrahim, Singapore); The Commonwealth as a
Watchdog of Democracy (Mangala
Samaraweera, Sri Lanka); Social Media With Focus on the
Youth Involvement (Dr. Lily
Neo, Singapore); Natural Disaster Management, (Dr.
Jhansi Lakshmi Botcha, India); Tackling Inequality:
Models Employed (Dr. Roberta
Blackman-Woods, United Kingdom); The Petitions Process in
the National Assembly of Wales (William
Powell, Wales); Challenge of Poverty and Democracy (Dr.
Sira Ubwa Mamboya, Zanzibar); What Does Democracy Mean
for the Poor and Deprived Sections of the Population? (Shariq
Sharief-Uddin, India); and Educating the Population (Saquib
Ullah Khan, Khyber Paktunkhwa, Pakistan).
During the seminar delegates had an opportunity to watch
Question Period in the House and Senate, attend a lunch hosted
by Senator Donald Oliver,
Speaker Pro Tempore
of the Senate, a dinner hosted by House of Commons Speaker
Andrew Scheer, a reception hosted by
Pat Davidson of the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians,
Canadian Branch, and a farewell dinner hosted by Mr. Hiebert.
Before adjourning, all delegates expressed their appreciation to
the seminar co-ordinator,
Elizabeth Kingston, Secretary of the Canadian Branch for
a highly successful event.
Since October there have been five
provincial and two territorial elections. As a result there are
now new presiding officers in Manitoba, Northwest Territories,
Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island and Ontario.
In Manitoba the new Speaker is
Daryl Reid. He
has represented Winnipeg Transcona in the Legislative Assembly
since 1990. Before entering politics he was active in the trade
union movement including four years as national president of his
railway employee association.
He has been re-elected five times and has sat on both the
government and the opposition side of the House. Among other
things he has served as critic for Transportation and Labour and
the Workers Compensation Board. He led a task force into
Manitoba’s system of issuing drivers licenses, and chaired a
series of public meetings into the status of the province’s
roads, rails and runways. In 2003 he chaired committees that
selected a new ombudsman and a new Auditor General for Manitoba.
He was elected Speaker on October 20, 2011 defeating two other
candidates in a secret ballot. He replaces
George Hickes who retired after twelve years in the
Jackie Jacobson was elected to the
Legislative Assembly on October 1, 2007 to represent the
Nunakput constituency, and re-elected on October 3, 2011. He has
been an active member of the Tuktoyaktuk community serving on
the hamlet council as the mayor for two terms and as a hamlet
councillor for two terms. He served as the secretary/treasurer
of the Tuktoyaktuk Community Corporation for eight years, as a
community recreation board member for three years, and as the
Chair of the Tuktoyaktuk Housing board for four years. In
addition, Mr. Jacobson served for six years as both member of
the board and as the Chair of the Inuvialuit Development
Corporation, and Chair of the Human Resources Board with
He was elected Speaker by acclamation on October 26, 2011
replacing Paul Delorey
who did not seek re-election.
Newfoundland and Labrador
In Newfoundland and Labrador the new
Ross Wiseman, MHA for
Trinity North. He has been a member of the House since he was
elected in a by-election on April 25, 2000. Prior to entering
political life, he had a successful 15-year career in health
administration with the Peninsulas Health Care Corporation and
the former Clarenville Area Hospital Board. He also has
extensive experience in the financial services industry, having
held several branch and regional management positions throughout
Newfoundland and Labrador.
While a Member in the House he has held many positions including
Deputy Chair of the Public Accounts Committee. He chaired the
public consultations on the “Smoking Ban in Bars and Bingo
Halls” resulting in a new Act entitled
The Smoke Free Environment Act (2005). He chaired the
Provincial Advisory Council on Aging and Seniors and also the
Public Consultations on Healthy Aging, a process to assist
Government in developing a Provincial Healthy Aging Plan.
In 2003 he was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister
of Health & Community Services and in 2007 he became Minister of
Health & Community Services. He was appointed Minister of
Business on July 9, 2009 and became Minister of Environment and
Conservation in January 2011.
He was elected Speaker on October 27 replacing
Roger Fitzgerald who retired.
Prince Edward Island
In Prince Edward Island the new Speaker is
Ms. Bertram was first elected to the Prince Edward Island
Legislative Assembly in September 2003 to represent District 17,
Crapaud Hazel Grove. She served as Opposition Critic for
Education, Tourism, the Status of Women and Community and
Cultural Affairs. Re elected in the provincial general election
on May 2007 in the new district of Rustico Emerald, she was
appointed to cabinet as Minister of Communities, Cultural
Affairs and Labour, and Minister responsible for Aboriginal
Affairs and Acadian and Francophone Affairs. In January 2010,
she was made Minister of Health and Wellness.
Formerly a school teacher at Central Queens Elementary School in
Hunter River, Ms. Bertram is fluently bilingual and holds a
Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Prince Edward
Island, and a Bachelor of Education Degree from Mount St.
She was elected Speaker by acclamation on November 1, 2011
replacing former Speaker
In Ontario the new Speaker is
Dave Levac. Born and raised in the riding of Brant, he
taught elementary and secondary school for 12 years before
becoming a principal in 1989. He was also active in community
service and in 1997 was named Citizen of the Year by readers of
The Brantford Expositor for having served as Coordinator
for the Queen’s Visit to Brantford, Chairperson and Founder of
Brantford’s Walk of Fame, Founder and Chair of the
Walter Gretzky C.N.I.B. Celebrity Golf Tournament, and
Vice-Chair of the Brant United Way Campaign.
In 1999 he turned to politics and was first elected to the
Legislature as the Liberal member for Brant. In Opposition over
the next four years, he served as Critic for the Office of
Solicitor General, Correctional Services and Public Safety and
Security. He was also Chair of the South Central Liberal Caucus.
He was re-elected in 2003 and served as Chief Government Whip
for four years.
For most of the 39th Parliament, from 2007-2011, he was a
Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Community Safety and
Correctional Services and later as Parliamentary Assistant to
the Minister of Energy.
During his time in the Legislature he has successfully sponsored
or co-sponsored a number of private members’ Bill including the
Firefighters’ Memorial Day Act, 2000; and
Sabrina’s Law, 2005.
The new Speaker has been active in interparliamentary activities
having served as the government representative for the Council
of State Government/Eastern Region Committee and Vice-Chair of
the Ontario-Quebec Parliamentary Association established to
foster the development of interparliamentary cooperation between
the Assemblies of Quebec and Ontario.
He was elected Speaker on November 21, 2011 defeating three
other candidates, Donna
Flynn and David
Zimmer. He replaces
Steve Peters who retired.
In the autumn issue it was reported that Kate Ryan-Lloyd was appointed Deputy Clerk of the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia on September 1, 2011 replacing Robert Vaive. In fact, Robert Vaive continues in his position as Clerk Assistant. Kate Ryan-Lloyd’s title is Deputy Clerk and Clerk of Committees.