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CPA Activities: The Canadian SceneCPA Activities: The Canadian Scene

21st CPA Canadian Regional Seminar

Each year one branch of the Canadian Region of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association hosts a seminar. This year the 21st seminar was held in Edmonton, from November 20-22, 1998.

About 50 delegates and observers from every jurisdiction except Quebec and British Columbia attended. The seminar was hosted by Speaker Ken Kowalski of Alberta.  Three other Speakers were also in attendance including; John McKay (New Brunswick), Louise Dacquay (Manitoba) and Sam Gargan (Northwest Territories).

The first business session was chaired by Alberta MLA Mike Cardinal and featured a presentation by Michael Percy, a former MLA and presently Dean of the Faculty of Business at the University of Alberta.  His topic was “The Economy – Is it a Soft Landing or a Crash Dive?”

The second business session was chaired by Alberta MLA Gary Dickson and featured a presentation by David Olmstead of the New Brunswick Legislative Assembly.  He spoke on the “Role of the Private Member”.

Howard Sapers MLA chaired the third session which looked at “Private Members’ Business in Alberta”.  The presenters were Don Tannas and Mr. Dickson.  The fourth session was chaired by Alberta MLA Carol Haley. The presenter was John Ostashek, the Leader of the Opposition in the Yukon.  His topic was “Proportional Representation”.

As is usually the case at these seminars much useful information was exchanged outside the formal sessions. Speaker Kowalski and his staff extended traditional Alberta hospitality to everyone in attendance. Next year the Regional Seminar will be held in Newfoundland.

New Federal Branch CPA Chair

On Wednesday November 18, 1998 the Federal Branch of CPA held its annual meeting to elected a a new Chair. Sarmite Bulte, MP was elected to succeed Bob Speller, MP. Mr. Speller remains Canadian Regional Representative at the international level. Arthur Donahoe Secretary-General of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association was guest speaker at the dinner meeting.

First elected as a Liberal Member of Parliament in 1997 Ms. Bulte represents Parkdale-High Park in the House of Commons. She studied at the University of Toronto and the University of Windsor where she obtained a law degree in 1978.

She has been active in a number of organizations including the International of Women Entrepreneurs of Canada, the Legal Education Action Fund (LEAF) Endowment Committee, the Judy Lamarsh Fund and the Canadian Association of Women Executives and Entrepreneurs.

Since her election she has been a member of the Liberal Task Force on Financial Institutions, the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage, Chair of the Sub-Committee of International Trade, Trade Disputes and Investment and Chair of the Liberal Caucus Committee on the CRTC.

In November 1998 she led a Canadian Trade and Investment Mission to the Baltic States and was a member of the Canadian delegation to the Women Leaders Network for APEC Economies which was held in Kuala Lumpur.

She is a member of the Canada-United Kingdom Parliamentary Association, the Canada-Europe Parliamentary Association and Chair of the Baltic States Friendship Group.

Speakers’ Conferences

The Canadian Presiding Officers’ Conference will take place in Ottawa from January 7-10, 1999.  It is co-hosted by Speakers Gildas Molgat of the Senate and Gilbert Parent of the House of Commons.  From January 5-8,  the Standing Committee of the Commonwealth Presiding Officers will also be in Ottawa for a meeting to set the agenda for the year 2000 Conference in Australia.  One joint event, a dinner on the evening of January 7, will bring together the Canadian and Commonwealth Presiding Officers.

Canadian Parliamentary Review Cover
Vol 21 no 4

Last Updated: 2020-03-03