Legislative Assemblies of Alberta and Saskatchewan, 2 May 1900, Alberta and Saskatchewan Debates over Confederation with Canada.



Continuation of Mr. Haultian's Speech on the Territorial Position.


partial amelioration of otherwise impossible financial conditions and will ask you to take action leading to the earliest practicable solution of Territorial and administrative problems. In accordance with the promise practically made to the House by the government in that portion of the speech the resolution which he moved, seconded by his colleague, Mr. Ross, had been placed on the order paper. He would not attempt to occupy much time in.
though in a matter dealing with so many different points, involving so many and such varied topics — each one worthy of a speech in itself — any remarks he must make would be long and he asked the indulgence of that House in that respect. The remarks in themselves would not be particularly original in themselves: but he was going to introduce the most important subject the House had ever had before it, and he was doing this in order to elicit discussion, not only in the House but in the country: and he hoped the references he should give, the citations he should make, and the sources of information he should indicate would help in the future discussion of the question, as well as point out where any one would be able to get information on this very important subject. The resolutions themselves were largely historical. They were taken almost exclusively in their very words from the public documents. They dealt with the
in a very concise way and gave in a few pages the history of the Territories since their acquisition by Canada. They dealt also to some extent with the history of the Dominion, and so dar as his argument went, with the colonial policy followed out by the Imperial Government, especially in regard to their lands. The object of the resolution was to introduce the subject within the realm of discussion. It was not a subject that could be settled in a day: not one that the House could settle at all, perhaps unfortunately: or one that could be settled in the immediate future: but in any event before it was settled it required the fullest discussion. He would not make any further remark as to whether the time was oppotune for the introduction of a resolution of this sort. He would try to develop that in the course of his speech. So he would simply begin at the beginning and take up the resolution clause by clause. The resolution in the "be it resolved" parts dealt with two phases of the buisness. First it asked for the fullest enquiry into the position of the territories, financial and otherwise, and to cause action to be taken for the present and immediate welfare and the good government of the Territories. The Assembly was a practical House. It had to deal with the practical buisness of this country sa they found it today, doing buisness as it came up. They had the duty imposed on them, not of theorising as regarded the future, but to deal with the present. While they talked about
made propositions as to what they would have at a future date, they must remember that their buisness was to deal with affairs as they come up from day to day. Therefore the necessity for some resolution and some comments by this House on the present and immediate future was just as important as any buisness the House had to do, and for which it was elected. The first recitals in the resolution were historical. Seven or eight of them were plain statements of actual facts taken from public documents. The first recital pointed out that by the British North America Act of 1867 power was given on request by address to admit Rupert's land and the North-West Territory into the Union. The House would notice that running through all these recitals there was a certain consistent idea. He wanted to impress upon the House the continuous chain of reference to the British North America Act, the analogy that existed between the Territories and the provinces: which made up the chain of argument that pointed most clearly to the duty of the Dominion Government and Parliament in regard to this country. With regard to this first recital, it was founded on the resolutions of
It was the resolution of the Fathers of Confederation and upon which was founded the Confederation Act. He would call attention to the Quebec resolutions, an important document, that it would be well for every hon. gentleman to look into when considering this subject. The resolutions passed at the Quebec conference showed that it was not for the benefit of the people of this country that confederation was established, it was for the development of the trade of the great west on the seaboard and it was regarded as a subject of the greatest importance, not to the Territories but to the confederated provinces, that the great west should be opened up, and communication established between Eastern Canada and British Columbia and Vancouver. He would leave the first recital at that point for the present. It simply pointed out the reason it was desirable the Northwest should be acquired by Canada, and communication opened up with it: viz, not for the benefit of the Territories but for the development of the trade of the provinces. The second recital showed that the necessary addresses had been presented from the Parliament of Canada asking for Rupert's Land and the Noth-West Territories to be united in Canada. These addresses of the Parliament of Canada were important the date of them is December 1867 because they were from the first parliament after confederation was completed and showed the reason why Rupert's Land and the North-West Territory should be taken into the union. The Union, so said the addresses, would promote the prosperity of the Canadian people and conduce to the advantages of the whole Empire, by extending westward to the Pacific Ocean. The addresses spoke of the development of the minerla wealth, the extension of means of intercourse as being dependent upon a stable government in the maintenance of law and order in the Territories. A large population of British subjects were inhabiting these Territories, and it was considered that the welfare of this population of political institutions bearing analogy to those that existed in the several provinces of the Union. These were the three reasons given by the joint addresses of the Parliament of Canada. Again, he would repeat that the reasons were, not for the benefit of this country, but for the prosperity of the Canadian people and incidentally only in a sense were the people of this country mentioned. He now came to the third recital. For the purpose of carrying out the arrangement it was necessary to have possession of the lands of
The Hudson's Bay Company's title had always been a matter of discussion. It had always been an open question whether they possessed Territorial rights over all they claimed. He would not go into this subject as it was  one that would involve a very long argument, and if any member of the House wished to look into the subject a little more fully he should read the report of Sir. Jacques Cartier and the Hon. Mr. McDougall, who were the delegates from Canada to England when the negotiations were going on, when incidentally the Hudson Bay Company's title was very fully discussed, in the litigation in the celebrated Ontario boundaries case. Well, it was on the action taken under the Rupert's Land Act 1868, that a surrender of the Hudson's Bay Company of its rights to the Dominion of Canada took place, and the Dominion claimed the absolute title to the Lands of this North-West country in consequence of this. It had been said over and over again when the Territories made any claim, "Oh, we bought you." It might, however, be that the amount paid was not a purchase price, but was in settlement of claims that existed, however, it was said the North-West had nothing to do with these lands within their bounds, but if the lands of the Hudson's Bay Company had been bought and paid for, it must be remembered that all the Hudson's Bay Company's lands were so parted with. It was not only the provincial districts that now formed the Territories,but Athabasca, Mackenzie and the Islands, Keewatin, a portion of what was now Ontario, Ungava, and a large portion now in the province of Quebec. So when the question came up as a practical question, as to what rights were obtained by the payment of the $1,500,000 to the Hudson's Bay Company there would be the still larger question: against which portion of that very large area was it to be charged? He would not dwell upon that at present, except to point out that the way the Dominion Government was keeping its books at present, the whole of that amount was written up against the diminishing area of the North-West Territories. He came now to recital No. 4. He simply mentioned the recital just then for the purpose of trying always to keep in view that when the Parliament of Canada asked to have the Dominion extended westward, one of the grounds was that the welfare of the people of these Territories would be largely enhanced by the foundation of political institutions, similar to those in the provinces; and he wished just now to lay stres upon this fact that throughout the whole history of the question, there is a consistent statement of intention and motive to deal with this country in a way analagous to the provinces. Recital 5 expressed the willingness of the Parliament of Canada to assume the duties and obligations of Government and legislation as regarded the Territories. Recital No 6 dealt with the
of Rupert's Land and the North-West Territories. This was accomplished under an imperial order in council on June 23, 1870, and it came into effect July 13, 1870. Under that order in council the Territories and Rupert's Land were admitted into and became part of the Dominion of Canada, and had given to them power to legislate for the welfare and good Government of the country. Recital 7 went on to say that by the British North America Act of 1871, subsequently amended, the Parliament of Canada was given further power for time to time to make provision for the administration of peace, order and good Government of any Territory not included in a province. By reading the two authorities together it was found that only power given to the Territories was to legislate for their future welfare and good Government. He would again lay stress upon the particular words, for those words were really the only words upon which was based the right to deal with the question. Recital 8 was one which would not necessitate his making any argument upon. They were here going away from public documents and stating a fact, viz., that the Parliament of Canada had created political institutions in the Territories bearing a close analogy to those which existed in the several provinces of the Dominion. He need hardly take up time in making any argument as to whether the Parliament had or had not done so. Simply as a matter of reference he would refer the House to the North-West Amendment Act of 1891 and subsequent amendments to the North-West Territories Act, in which would be found a full description of the powers given to the North-West Legislature. For a more ready means of reference the North-West Territories Act as amended would be found at the beginning of the volume of the Consolidated Ordinance of the North-West Territories. He would now refer to Section 92 of the British North America Act. To put it shortly in order to show what a very slight difference there was between the powers enjoyed by the Territories to-day and those that were enjoyed by the Provinces. He would give in a very few words the exact difference that existed. The Territories enjoyed nearly all the powers. They had not the power to amend the constitution, outside certain phases of their election law. They could not borrow money; they had no public domains; they could not establish certain public institutions, such as hospitals, asylums and either eleemosynary institutions; and they could not administer the criminal law. That he thought would suffice on that head. In regard to recital 9 he might say at the very beginning that the bases upon which financial assistance was given to the provinces were well defined in one sense, but they were not exactly rigid. There had been many departures in some of the provinces. Under the British North America Act the following provisions were made as provincial revenues. A yearly grant from Domi nion funds for the support of Government, varying from $80,000 in Ontario to $35,000 in British Columbia; a per capita grant for local purposes of 80 cents, as was set forth in the Quebec resolutions. The assumption by the Dominion of the indebtedness, and the retention of all the provincial revenue producing sources such as customs, etc., were also part of the compact. These were extended to British Columbia and Prince Edward Island when they entered confederation, but were varied when Manitoba entered as would be shown later on. Such were the provisions that were made at the time of confederation for the revenue of the provinces. He now came to recital 10. They were departing a little from pure history and getting into controversial matter. The recital said that the Territories were
to such federal assistance as would bear due proportion and analogy to that given to the provinces. Now the expression in the recital, "in integral part of the Dominion," had been used simply for this purpose; the Territories had been created a political entity; they had political powers as separate as any province; they had a legislature; and with the exceptions he had already named, they stand very much the same as a province, and might fairly be called an integral part of the Dominion. There was no doubt of their having imposed upon them the duties and obligations incidental to the political institutions that had been given them. Their legislature had been created with certain powers, and had imposed upon it the duties and obligations arising therefrom. The Parliament of Canada assumed for themselves those duties and obligations and had imposed them upon the Territories. He did not use the word "imposed" in any complaining sense. The point he wished to make in the recital was that the Territories were entitled, not only to be dealt with analogously to the other provinces, side by side with the institutions; but that if they were to have the institutions, the duties and the obligations, they were also entitled to an analogous and proportionate amount of financial assistance for so doing. That seemed to him to be a perfectly fair deduction to be made from the position and would commend itself to the House. [Hear hear.] In the memorials from the Assembly in 1892 and 1896, and the memorials that had been sent up from time to time by the Executive Committee the same arguments had been forcibly made, in regard to recitals 11 and 12, he did not think it would be necessary from him to give any evidence or to make any arguments that repeated representations had been made for just and equitable financial assistance, or that they had been made in the right way. All the assistance necessary had been called in, yearly representations had been made with a view of obtaining just and equitable financial assistance. That would be agreed to by every member of the House. [Hear, hear.] The results of those representations could be seen in the journals of their House and in the Appropriation Acts of the dominion Parliament. These would be standing evidence that the Territories never had received a sufficient amount of money. Recital 13 went on to say that it was desirable a basis should be established upon which the claims of the Territories might be settled and agreed upon. This, also, was a statement that needed no long argument of his to establish. A satisfactory basis of a permanent character, a basis for a certain number of years would be a good thing for carrying on their business. He would again refer to the journals of the legislature's proceedings and to the memorials from the House. It would be seen then that from time to time the fixing for a term of years had been one of the prominent features. In 1892 the time asked to be fixed was four years, and in 1896 there was a similar request. There had, however, been no such dealing with the question either by Federal Government or the Federal Parliament. He need not tell the House, these were incontrovertable facts. He now came to the resolution itself
This (No. 14) dealt with their present position and their immediate future. He would like the House to understand that there had never been at any time any tendency on the part of the Territories to stand still and theorise, or to balance on a tight rope. He thought the policy of the Government had been a careful and gradual development both of their institutions and financial requirements. They had from time to time obtained a little more money and a little more power. At no time, had they or could they, come to a sudden stop and mark time. The work of the North-West must be carried on, the intentions of the legislature should be carried on, and they should not modify their requests, but should use to the full extent all the power they already possessed, and the nearer they got to what the law could give them as to provincial rights, the more close the analogy already insisted upon, the less felt would be the wrench, the less dangerous would be the jump, when the point was reached. One thing that would result from a definite and permanent basis was that it would do away with the much spoken of annual
He had always thought it was an undesirable thing, an undignified thing that the representatives of that House had to go to Ottawa asking for what they considered their right. But such excursions had to be made. The circumstances required that the fullest information should be placed before the Dominion government, when they did not know from year to year that they should obtain as much as in the preceding year, and that any increase must depend upon the amount of representation made. So long as that state of affairs existed, just so long would some one have to go down to Ottawa and press the claims of the Territories upon the Federal Government. The next advantage of having their financial affairs settled for two ears or a number of years, would be that there would be no speculation from year to year as to the amount of money they would have to spend. An opinion had been expressed as to the time for the sitting of the House. It should meet early in the year, the earlier the better, and more convenient. In present circumstances, if the Dominion parliament had not begun to sit, there would be no indication of what the Territories would receive. In what position would they be in framing their estimates? They would not know what they were going to get, and [...]



The House re-assembled shortly before three o'clock, and precisely at that hour,
Mr. Haultain rose and was received with cheers. He moved the following resolution:
1. Whereas by the British North American Act 1866 it was, among other things, enacted that it should be lawful for the Queen, by and with the advice of Her Majesty's Most Honourable Privy Council, on Address from the Houses of the Parliament of Canada, to admit Rupert's Land and the North-Western Territory, or either of them into the Union on such terms and conditions in each case as should be in the Addresses expressed and as the Queen should think fit to approve subject to the provisions of the said Act;
2. And whereas by an Address from the Houses of the Parliament of Canada Her Majesty was prayed to unite Rupert's Land and the North-Western Territory with the Dominion of Canada;
3. And whereas, in order to further the petition of the Parliament of Canada, Her Majesty, under the authority of the Rupert's Land Act 1896, accepted a surrender from the Governor and Company of Adventurers of England trading into Hudson's Bay of all the lands, territories, privileges, liberties, franchises, powers and authorities whatsoever granted or purported to be granted by certain Letters Patent therein recited to the said Company in Rupert's Land;
4. And whereas in the said address it was represented to Her Majesty, as a reason for the extension of the Dominion of Canada westward, that the welfare of the population of these Territories would be materially enhanced by the formation therein of political institutions bearing analogy, as far as circumstnces will admit, to those which existed in the several provinces then forming the Dominion;
5. And whereas the Houses of the Parliament of Canada by their said Address expressed to Her Majesty their willingness to assume the duties and obligations of government and legislation as regards the Territories;
6. And whereas in pursuance and exercise of the powers vested in the Queen by the aforesaid Acts, Her Majesty, by and with the advice of Her Most Honourable Privy Council, ordered and declared that from and after the fifteenth day of July, 1870, Rupert's Land and the North-Western Territory should be admitted into and become part of the Dominion of Canada, and granted power and authority to the Parliament of Canada to legislate for the future welfare and good government of these Territories;
7. And whereas by the British North America Act 1871 the Parliament of Canada was further given power from time to time to make provision for the administration, peace, order and good government of any Territory not for the time being included in any Province;
8. And whereas under the several authorities so given the Parliament of Canada has created political institutions in these Territories bearing a close analogy to those which exist in the several Provinces of the Dominion;
9. And whereas by the Confederation compact the Provinces which formed the Dominion on the fifteenth day of July 1870, were furnished with the means of carrying on local self government upon certain well defined bases;
10. And whereas the Territories being an integral part of the Dominion, and having imposed upon them the duties and obligations incidental to the political institutions which have been given to them and which said duties and obligations the Parliament of Canada has declared its willingness to assume, are entitled to such Federal assistance for their maintenance as will bear due proportion and analogy to that given to other portions of the Dominion for similar purposes;
11. And whereas repeated representa tions have been made in various ways to the Government of Canada with a view to obtaining just and equitable financial assistance towards providing for the proper and effective administration of local affairs in the Territories and for the public necessities of their rapidly increasing population:
12. And whereas such representations have been met by intermittent and insufficient additions to the annual grant the provision so made by the Parliament of Canada never bearing any adequate proportion to the financial obligations imposed by the enlargement and development of the political institutions created by itself;
13. And whereas it is desirable that a basis should be established upon which the claims of the Territories to suitable financial recognition may be settled and agreed upon;
14. Therefore be it resolved that an humble address to His Excellency the Governor General be adopted by this House praying him that he will be pleased to cause the fullest enquiry to be made into the position of the Territories, financial and otherwise, and to cause such action to be taken as will provide for their present and immediate welfare and good government, as well as the due fulfillment of the duties and obligations of government and legislation assumed, with respect of these Territories, by the Parliament of Canada;
15. And be it further resolved that, whereas by the British North America Act 1871 it was (amongst other things) enacted that the Parliament of Canada may from time to time establish new Provinces in any Territories forming for the time being part of the Dominion of Canada but not included in any Province thereof, and may, at the time of such establishment, make provision for the constitution and administration of such Province, His Excellency be also prayed to order enquiries to be made and accounts taken with a view to the settlement of the terms and conditions upon which the Territories, or any part thereof shall be established as a Province, and that before any such Province is established opportunity should be given to the people of the Territories through their accredited representatives of considering, and discussing such terms and conditions.
Mr. Haultain said that in the speech from the Throne with which the present session was opened there occurred the following sentence: "It is gratifying for me to be able to inform you that the Federal Government has proposed to Parliament now in session a moderate increase to your annual grant, and a large special vote for the purpose of restoring public works destroyed by the floods. In spite of this very substantial increase to the revenue, my government can only look upon it as affording a temporary and


even if they had private assurances, they could not act before the Federal House met. If they did questions would be asked in the Dominion House and there might be embarassment and inconvenience. If, however the financial grant were on a fixed basis, the Territorial House could meet at a date most convenient to itself, because it would be easy to frame the estimates. Now the first resolution No. 14 dealt with the present position of the Territories. The House was confronted with the actual position as it existed. They had to deal with the question not only on its financial side, for there were other sides, there was the constitutional side. No matter whether they got their finances on a permanent basis, for two years, or ten years, there were certain other things necessary for the proper carrying on of the business of the House. They had to, to extend, extension was going on as population increased, and conditions became more complicated. Whatever the postponement of the financial questions however long a time it might be, it was the duty of the Assembly, an absolute necessity to ask for an extension of their power, not in ten years, or two years, but now, immediately. Cheers. They had not the power to regulate their own constitution. They ought to have it. There was no reason why they should not have it. There were several points involved that made it difficult to pass election laws, and they had no power to disqualify even a member of their own House. Again they ought to have the power to administer criminal justice. There were two reasons why they should not: there were many reasons why they should. The Territories administered the civil law, and under the present system practically two sets of officials had to be kept up in the country. The Crown agency should be done by the Attorney General. Then they should have certainly, and had often asked for the control of the registry offices. The important power to legislate in regard to property and civil rights that the Assembly already had was practically taken away by the Dominion Government dealing with land titles. One every side the Territories met with difficulties in regard to land titles, and if they had the right to deal with property, including land, they could make many improvements in general legislation. He believed that if this additional power were granted, if their land titles system were local, they would reduce very much the number of fees charged for various services performed. Now, it might be asked why come down with a resolution upon this question at this time? Why should it be put so formally as by an address to the Governor General? He would say that the treatment hitherto accorded by the Dominion Government to the memorials and the resolutions already sent, had been such as to make it undesirable to continue. That line of somewhat internally dealing with the subject. They had arrived at a time when they were confronted with
and the House should in the most formal way, not satisfied with the treatment dealt out to the Territories, ask that its financial claims be enquired into. (Hear, hear.) That was all he proposed to say in regard to the first resolution. It spoke for itself. It dealt altogether with the practical necessities of the position: it dealt with them as they were. It was generally admitted by every member of the house that more money was needed, and more power: and there could be no objection to the strongest demands from the quarter from which alone they must derive both the money and the power. (Cheers.) He now come to the second resolution. (No. 15.) Before taking up the resolution he would simply ask the House to go over the recitals which led up to it. They showed and suggested the development of the method of action. The intention by Parliament to give institutions to this country, the restriction that anything done should be subject to the British North American Act after the country was acquired for the benefit, be remembered, of eastern markets and eastern trade: the consistent method which had been followed to establish institutions of the provinces: all these running through every document, though every act of Parliament, and through ever official statement made; all showed that the institutions of the North-West Territories should bear analogy to those of the provinces, and be dealt with under the British North American Act and the principle underlying. A question would be raised at the very outset: How long should the gradual development of their present institutions to go on? Well, he should say it should go on until the question was settled. (Hear, hear.) To begin with he would point out that the institutions should be as nearly exact as possible to the provincial institutions. Their present position was an impossible one. They had
of obtaining an increase in their grants. (To be continued next week.)
Precisely at half past three on Friday afternoon a trumpet flourish announced the arrival of Lieutenant Governor Forget to prorogue, the Assembly. His Honor entered the House, accompanied by Supt. Strickland, N.W.M.P., as aide de camp, and having given assent to the bills passed by the Legislature prorogued the House by the following speech:
Mr. Speaker and gentlemen of the Legislative Assembly:In relieving you of your legislative duties. I desire to thank you for the diligent consideration which you have given to the matters to which your attention has been directed. I am glad to observe the unanimity with which the proposals submitted by my Government for meeting the present and immediate necessities, as well as the future position and condition of these Territories, have met your approval. I thank you for the supplies granted for the Public Service, and while regretting the sad occurrence at Ottawa and Hull, I am glad to observe that you have given practical expression to the sympathetic feelings of the people of the Territories for the suffering of our fellow countrymen in those cities. I now bid you farewell in full confidence that your labors will conduce to the welfare of the Territories.
Mr. G. H. V. Bulyea, Territorial Secretary, then announced the prorogation and the proceedings terminated.



Railway Exemptions, School Lands, Justice to the Territories. Banff Park.

(Continued from last week.)
However well disposed a government might be the conditions that existed in Parliament to-day would prevent any adeqtate amount being given to them. He made that statement: he believed that was the case. So long as the Territories remained in a dependent position so long would it be impossible for them to secure even that adequate recognition without which they could not carry on. The North-West had gone through the preliminary stage. They had been founding their institutions for a number of years, and they had fairly well exhausted the power that had been given them. They had founded their institutions, and had got out of their foundations. The time had arrived for them to begin the superstructure. (Cheers.) They had had the foundation well; they had exhausted the powers they possessed; and although he would not say that further progress was impossible, yet he did say that progress to a large amount was not possible, and to develop was was not possible under the existing institutions. (Hear hear.) They had, as the hon. member for Yorkton had said, grown out of their clothes. He did not believe their present institutions were suitable to their present conditions. The question arose, why should their jurisdiction be limited? They had been accorded very urgely the duties of a province. The part given was of more importance than the part witheld. They had arrived at a time when something more was necessary, some larger power given, and then left to work out their own salvation. They could not look to the Dominion Government. The surrounding conditions would prevent any Government from having a free hand. It could never be done satisfactorily until their institutions were so developed that they were put in a position to develop their own resources. Hitherto their Government's work had been mere administration. Having but a small vote they had been deprived of doing more than looking after the interests of the country. They wanted now to go on and develop its resources. The question was: What should we do? Should we simply stand still? He gathered from the expression of the House that they should never stand still. They must ask for further powers and demand more money. Why should not they
When they had arrived at the actual point, both the financial point, and the constitutional point, they ought not to be diffident about the further step. That step was to go to the very limit allowed by the British North America Act. Even if to-morrow they were formed into a province or provinces, apart from the financial question to be settled, he did not fancy that any person in the whole Territories would feel that a large revolution had occurred, because after all the provincial institution, as it touched the every day life of the people was much the same as at present. They were driven and driven by necessity, both by their financial conditions and constitutional position, to consider the assumption of provincial institutions. The question was, within what time? He did not think it would be desirable to involve the House in a discussion as to fixing the actual date of an event they had no power to bring about. After all, they had not the fixing of the date and any expression of the opinion of the House on the subject would only have weight in proportion to the unanimity with which it was expressed. But there was a certain date within which it could not be taken, but within which they could be getting ready. (Hear hear). Next year there will be
No action could be taken until the census was taken. The population of the country was the basis of the per capita grant.
Mr. Bennett—Not impossible, only inexpedient.
Mr. Haultain—Nothing was impossible. The Federal Parliament could bring in a bill tomorrow and make a dozen provinces if it so wished. Nothing was impossible, but it would be absurd for any parliament to attempt to lay down the terms and conditions until a census had been taken, as population was their basis. More than that! It was rather a significant coincidence that the term of the present legislature ran out in 1902. They would have completed their term then and if things went along in their ordinary course the census would be completed just before the Assembly had completed its labors. A third point of the coincidence was that there would be a new Dominion Parliament between now and then. All of these facts falling together seemed to him to establish, not only a significant time, but
The time was not too long. Some things had to be understood, so many opinions to be expressed, so many claims to be enforced, that the short space of two years was not a bit too long for the full ussion of the subject, for its consideration by every member of that House and every man in the North-West Territories. As he had already said, although the time was good, still the mere fact that they knew perfectly well no provinee or provinces could be established this year or next year, and before such province or provinces could be established, it would certainly be in the interest of the Territories, and of any portion of them that the fullest consideration should be given to all the important subjects he had indicated. There was another point that might be raised in regard to this subject. What right had they to act now, what brief or what mandate had they to express even a theoretical opinion? It might be said they had no authority from the people to plunge them into the discussion. He would say, however, that it was not a new subject. There had been sufficiently clear indications that it would be a subject for discussion in the Assembly, though not with the view of making a deliberate statemeat as to whether they would have it or not. The subject involved too many questions for that. Bet it was brought in reply, before the House last summer and it was a theme of discussion from one end of the country to the other. He himself referred to the subject in a speech he made to the House in September 1898, shortly before the general election. He referred to the matter when introducing the estimates. Then again he need only refer to the general election of 1898 when he made much the same statement as he had made in the House. He stated that the time had arrived, and would be the last  work of the new legislature. Therefore, he now repeated, if they needed any mandate for taking the step he asked the House to take, that mandate had been fairly indicated. After all, they were not assuming on the part of the people of the Territories the right to make an agreement. They simply asked that negotiations should be opened. Indeed, the main result that would follow from the resolution would be the further discussion that would take place throughout the country. The people needed to be brought face to face with the question: they needed to have explained to them the actual position in which they were. If nothing else resulted from the resolution than the discussion throughout the country, the necessary education, in a sense, in regard to these important rights, would be in itself a sufficient justification for beginning the discussion at the present time. But it was
It was a practical question. Under what institutions were they going to live and carry on the development of the country? The question had been discussed during the last few months, and it was discussed to-day. All over the Territories the subject was looming up larger than any other. The whole country was considering it, and was not opposing it. It had been said that if a poll were taken on the question seven out of ten would vote down an autonomy resolution. Perhaps they would if they did not understand it. But at any rate the country was not opposed to the discussion of the provincial idea. What it was opposed to was a radical and immediate change. The people were somewhat alarmed by the speech he had made at Yorkton. They thought the direct result of the policy there enunciated would be direct taxation, the establishment of municipalities, and a large number of other things held up as bugbears wherever, the question of a province was raised. There was no necessity for any such alarm as that. If a certain amount of misapprehension existed it was their duty to remove it, not by shrinking from it but by discussing it: not by dangling these bugbears, direct taxation and municipalities, but by an intelligent discussion of what would be the only financial terms they could reasonably expect. He had always made a proviso of proper financial terms. He would never consent to the establishment of a province under such terms as were Olacc
They would be better as they now were than that. No, he had always coupled with any proposal, that adistinct understanding must be given in regard to proper, means to carry out both duties and obligations. There should be no misapprehension in regard to the matter, but no desire to plunge the country into it without a settlement of these important questions. He had no intention of rushing into direct taxation or municipal institutions. With the powers they had possessed for fourteen years, direct taxation and municipal institutions could not be used except in the modified sense they had used them already in their legislation. No legislation would plunge the people into these institutions. It was a matter for the people themselves. Now, his principal argument for the immediate taking up of this question with a view to its settlement and discussion, was that they must make progress in this country, and without a change that would almost be impossible. Education was the instrument of progress, and without discussion progress would not take place.
Mr. Haultain continued by saying that he now came back to the resolution. "Whereas parliament had certain powers." Remember that parliament had power to deal with the [?] drives before [?] in the position of self governing colonies, like Prince Edward Island and British Columbia, which could please themselves whether they federated or not and could dictate their own terms. The Territories were simply the
parliament, and without reference to the Territories, were it so inclined, it could make a province or provinces. But they did claim as a moral right to be  treated in analogy to the other provinces; they claimed the right to discuss and negotiate; and if they had not the power to dictate terms, or to be one party to an agreement, they claimed to be treated in the same way as citizens in other parts of the Dominion were treated. The resolution had left out anything that could be called the controversial side of the question. The question whether there should be one, two, three or a dozen provinces was not for them to discuss. It was one of the most difficult things in drawing that resolution to so do it as to avoid controversy. They might waste a great deal of valuable time in discussing these controversial points, and yet get no nearer a solution. He had, therefore, purposely refrained from putting anything of a controversial nature into the resolution. They said at once that it was understood that parliament had the power to do what they liked in the matter, and they had the right to do so without any consultation with the people of the Territories. Again, the Territories were not in the position of a province seeking to enter confederation. Parliament had power to carve the Territories out into as many provinces as it saw fit; but the House could ask for an opportunity of impressing its views upon the Government. They did say that their interests and their future were so much bound up that they should at least assert a moral right to negotiate and discuss. For that reason the resolution had been put in the way it was put so as to keep out the controversial side of the question. They did not wish to theorize or indulge in an academic question, or to present themselves as a divided House, forated of little groups, each one with its pet idea. Parliament would then say "These people do not know what they want, they do not help us in coming to a conclusion. We will deal with it ourselves." But he did say there were important ides of the financial question and the


Continued from page 1
constitutional question that would effect not only one province, if there were to be one, but two or a half dozen, and would effect them all equally. They asked therefore for an enquiry and that accounts should be taken. Why? Because, as he had already said, the basis on which the various constitutions of the several provinces were formed at confederation had been departed from in some cases, and they might obtain more suitable conditions, when any portion of he Territories came to be formed into a province or provinces. What constitution and what Government should be given to the people in this country? He would ask the House to go back a little way. He had traced the history how it came about, what applications had been made, what had been the results, and how their treatment was to be analogous to those of the provinces. Now, he would go back a little in the history of the country. What was the actual state of the people who were here before it was taken over by the Dominion. He would ask the members to refer to some letters written by the Secretary of Sate for Canada in 1869, Mr. Joseph Howe. They would be found in the special report of the correspondence in regard to the North- West printed by order of parliament in 1870. hey would there find corroboration of the position he had taken. Now with regard to the constitutional side of the resolution, he need say but very little. The constitution of the provinces was fixed by the British North America Act, and following that and he analogy that existed, they might confidently expect that when the province or provinces were made, they would be accorded the same constitution. The most important side of the question here was, what means would be given to carry on the Government? Naturally in considering that question they looked to the other provinces so that the inhabitants of this portion of the Dominion might fairly claim that when the question of financial assistance was considered, that that financial assistance would bear analogy and due proportion to that of the provinces. He could see no difference between these parts of the Dominion and any other portion. When people came to the North-West they did not lose any portion of their birthright: did not come here to be treated in an entirely different way to their fellow citizens. In accordance with
and right, when they got the institutions similar financial assitance should be given to carry on those institutions. Now, the first item given was for the support of the goernment, and the amounts were: Ontario, $80,000: Quebec, $70,000: Nova Scotia, $60,000: New Brunswick, $50,000: British Columbia, $35,000. The amounts therefore were not fixed. This of itself was an ample justification for the enquiry and negotiation asked for by the resolution. Were the Territories to get the maximum $80,000 or the minimum $35,000? In many portions of the Dominion work was done by municipal government, but here that was not so. The Government did the work, and in any grant to the Territories that should be taken into consideration. There were reasons for a liberal allowance on this very particular subject. Then there was a large area and a sparse population. These were reasons why they should have a large allowance. Then there was the per capita grant of 80 cents on the population. This allowance was given the other provinces in the language of the British North America Act, for local purposes, and as a matter of fact it was given under the Quebec resolutions, and several reasons were advanced in the confederation debates, one of which was that it was for the giving up to the Federal Government the provincial taxing powers, customs, duties, etc. Now, this question opened up several controversial sides, and that also sufficiently justified that an enquiry be made and accounts taken. The basis of the tax was population and in Manitoba the arrangement was to be readjusted to population at certain fixed periods. This arrangement was to last until the population reached 400,000. This limit of 400,000 was fixed as the basis upon which this suets should be paid. He had never been able to understand why such a limit should be imposed. Why, if within the next four or five years the 400,000 were exceeded, they should not be paid suets, a head, he could not understand. That was another reason why enquiry should be made. The population in the east was uniform, but it was not so in the west. There had been a constant change in the proportions. He could give figures to show this but it was not necessary, as while the older provinces had been stationary, New Brunswick, for instance, in the west they had been increasing by leaps and bounds. Manitoba increased in a few years 240 per cent,. and in a few years the Territories would do the same. Thus there would be a very large question to be settled. What should be the basis of their per capita grant? Should it be on a revision as in Manitoba, every two and a half years, and with a limit of 400,000 or should they not receive in proportion to their population whatever it might be. These were open questions and justified the resolution that enquiry should be made and accounts be taken. He now came to the next important subject:
On this important matter he recommended hon. gentlemen to read Hon. Alexander Galt's speeches during the confederation debates. Mr. Galt was minister of finance at the time, and was one of the most eminent financiers they ever had in Canada and one of the fathers of confederation. The principle proceeded upon was that as the Dominion assumed the debts of the provinces that first entered confederation, then those that entered at a subsequent date would be entitled to a certain amount of rebate. Mr. Haultain also referred to the Quebec resolutions and the British North America Act on the subject, and strongly recommended hon. members to study the sources he had indicated. As to Manitoba, when it was created a province, she was given a certain rebate for the debts that had been incurred by the other provinces and assumed by the Dominion at confederation, but before Manitoba entered. He supposed that as they were taken into union at the same date as Manitoba 1870, they would be dealt with on the same basis. Then the question arose as to whether they should have the five years census and two and a half years readjustment as they had in Manitoba. There seemed to have been a faulty opinion as to the debt charged against this country. He had a document from the Department of the Interior which showed that $3,800,000 were already charged up against the Territories, and it included quite a number of curious items. Thus there was $19,000 for the construction of Fort Garry road and Fort William road. That was an item charge to the Territories for the benefit of the people of this country. Then there was $8,000 more for the same road: $15,000 for a canal in Manitoba: $27,000 for boats: $!63,000 for exploring the Red river: $10,100 for Red river rebellion: several other items such as $84,000 and $23,000 for Fort Garry road and Fort William road: and $45,000 for boats. These were only a few of such items that went to make up the $3,800,000 already charged up against the Territories. He thought that this justified the fullest enquiry and the taking of accounts as asked by the Territories. It was a wonder, it seemed to him, that they had not charged up against the Territories the wars of 1812-13(cheers), which would be as appropriate. Everything that could was being charged up against the diminishing area of the North-West Territories. He now came to
This was a most important side of the discussion. In the year 1898 the expenditure on railroads in the Dominion had reached $160,623,557. There was an expenditure for lines wholly within the provinces of $48,380,848. Now, he supposed it would be perfectly reasonable for the representatives of the Territories to say "We should be allowed something in respect of that." The Dominion had done these works which were local in their nature: the $48,380,848 was for purely local lines in the provinces. Now, these formed part of the federal debt. Towards this debt the people of the North-West Territories contributed their share, man for man, with the rest of the Dominion, as much as any body else. And now note this also. Quite a different policy had been followed as regarded the railways in the Territories. Instead of subsidising them, except $3,000,000 in the case of the Crow's Nest which was very largely constructed in British Columbia, little over 100 miles in the Territories and the whole Dominion bearing its share, as in the others, instead of subsidising them, the Dominion took 39,300,000 acres of land in the Territories in Manitoba and gave them to the railways. Look for a moment at the difference. In the provvinces the Dominion shoulders the whole of the $48,380,848, and the Territories were helping pay for it: but for the lines in Territories they gave the lands of the Territories and no burden rested upon the people of the provinces. It was
and unfairness. If they had to pay their share of the railway debt in other provinces, why should they not have a certain allowance made in lieu of that debt and of their lands taken away. Surely that was sufficient to justify the fullest enquiry and the taking of accounts. (Cheers.) Mr. Haultain then dealt with the mineral royalties and quoted Sir John. A. Macdonald, and Hon. A. Galt to show that each province ought to have the power of developing its own resources: and hon. Geo. Brown in regard to the lands. This, said Mr. Maultain was the most important side of
There would have never been any Dominion of Canada if there had been the giving up of the mines to the federal government. The principle of the claim to the lands was admitted. Every one of the older provinces had their lands, and Manitoba had a payment in lieu of them. One of the reasons the C.P.R. was constructed was because of a pledge given to British Columbia. There was not a line within that province, and it agreed to give a certain amount of its land for the construction of the C.P.R. For that reason and on that account the Dominion paid British Columbia $100000 a year, which the people of the North-West Territories helped to pay: for that rocky belt along which the line ran. In the case of the Territories the whole land grant was simply made, and the claim was that the federal
authorities own this country, and dealt with it for Dominion purposes. The question arose why should not the Territories be granted a portion of these lines? Why should any distinction he made between the Territories and the provinces? It was claimed the Dominion had purchased the lands from the Hudson's Bay Company, and for the benefit of the whole Dominion. Well, when the Dominion got the Hudson's Bay lands, it got all of them. A portion now formed a part of the province of Quebec: another portion a part of the province of Ontario. The lands in the east being part of the bargain were also for the benefit of the whole of the Dominion, of which the Territories were entitled to be considered. The Dominion claimed "We bought you." Well, at any rate if that be so, the Territories were paying their share of the money, and if there was anything in the "we bought you" doctorine, it was hardly fair to make the North-West pay a portion of the purchase money, and portion of the interest upon it.
It being now 5:30 the House adjourned until evening.
Mr. Haultain resumed his speech at eight o'clock. He said that when they left the House that afternoon he was discussing the important part that public domains, lands, mineral, and what an important item they were at that period of the discussion. And particularly what a very essential part of the provincial revenue those lands were, and what an important part they would be in any negotiations for establishing a future province or provinces. He also pointed out that the British North America Act recognized what an important part it was, and in the negotitations subsequently this principle was recognized: in the case of Prince Edward Island, there was no grant to them because they did not have any public lands: in Manitoba because the lands had been withdrawn from them they received a grant in lieu; in British Columbia a strip of land belonging to them was given to the C.P.R., and provinces was recompensed by an annuity of $100,000, which the Territories were helping to pay. He then began to discuss what the Dominion's claims to the Territorial lands were. he had continued the argument to that point only, as it would loom up large when the establishment of public institutions was coming on. At present, however, the more practical side, the necessity of change on practical lines, the question of their financial position, was what they had to consider. The American precedent had been quoted by the Dominion Government to show it owned the land, because, when definite terms were accorded to Manitoba, and presumably it would be the same in the west when the time came, they were able to show why the lands should be withdrawn. The American precedent was the holding of the lands of [...]


Regina Leader, 1896-1904. Digitized by Google Books.



Selection of input documents and completion of metadata: Gordon Lyall.

Personnes participantes: