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NEWS RELEASE · 13th March 2012
MP Nathan Cullen - Ottawa
The 2012-13 Main Estimates released by the Conservative government outline provisional spending plans for the March 29 budget that forecasts a deep series of cuts to key departments for environmental protection.

The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency can expect a $13 million cut, which is over 43% of their budget.

“We have a panel that is already undermined by industry and government pressure. Now there is a forecast to cut an agency that is central to the review process and would assist in keeping things safe,” said MP Nathan Cullen referring to the Enbridge Northern Gateway Joint Review Panel.

Fisheries and Oceans would lose $156 million, and see a total elimination of aids to navigation. Transport Canada would lose $10 million of marine safety spending.

“How can people feel secure with oil-filled supertankers entering the unpredictable waters of the Douglas Channel for the first time in history with no navigation aids?”

Portions of the Douglas Channel are 1.35km wide, much narrower than the 10km wide passage where the Exxon Valdez disaster occurred.

“The Conservatives are planning to gut the services that offer protection against oil spills, which only undermines and already weakened process,” said Cullen.

The Main Estimates show the direction of the government’s spending plans for the upcoming fiscal year. It is provisional and can change significantly before the budget is tabled. However, it provides preliminary projections that assist the Official Opposition in holding the government to account for its fiscal decisions.
With some exceptions.
Comment by Helmut Giesbrecht on 16th March 2012
I don't mind the vote subsidy. I think it should have come with a complete ban on all other political donations as a caveat. It would be good way to level the playing field during elections.

I also don't mind the CBC except that its funding has been cut to the point that it is not doing a good job. Too much of the content is superficial following the other media. The U.S does not have a single nation-wide broadcast service so you get these disparate interests all vying for public attention. I think the CBC does a better job connecting regions and it still keeps other broadcasters reasonably honest. Otherwise we would simply have radio and TV owned by one political interest or another a Fox or Sun News with the other side creating another. The truth would be harder to get.

On the rest I am not sure yet.
Well said HG
Comment by Shawn ksisiiaks on 16th March 2012
A great start. How about these winners:

The senate at $1,000,000,000 annually.
Bilingism at $2,400,000,000 annually.
The per vote subsity to political parties at $30,000,000.
The long gun registry (sorry Nathan but you can't use this one) at $100,000,000 annually
Subities to CBC $1,000,000,000 annually.

Tough choices need a strong leader, and I'm still waiting for one federally.
Weee the people
Comment by blocky bear on 15th March 2012
I concur Helmut G.,only if we let them! d.b.
We could start here.
Comment by Helmut Giesbrecht on 15th March 2012
Could have saved $2 billion since 1998 not buying four used submarines that are still not in service.

The federal agency spent $1,890,000 to subsidize donuts made with pure lard.

Could have saved $1.5 million wasted for unused hotel rooms at the Francophone Summit in Quebec

Public Works staff accidentally sold off Queen’s silver for $4,000 then spent nearly $100,000 to get it back

$1.4 million spent by mint to discover $20 million of ‘missing gold’ not really missing

Oh and then there is the $9 billion for those F 35 fighter jets.

But it is always easier to cut spending for the agencies that are suppose to be looking after the public's interest. It is much harder to avoid waste or to change ideological priorities.
Thanks for the $500B in debt
Comment by Shawn ksisiiaks on 15th March 2012
So where would the NDP save $13M and $136M instead?

I don't support Harper, but I equally don't support positons that provide no alternatives. I care about marine saftey, but I care more that birth certificates carry a $15k price tag.
Government can do anything?
Comment by Helmut Giesbrecht on 13th March 2012
One person's expeditious approval process is another person's violation of environmental oversight. You can' please them both. Clearly there is a group that wants expeditious approval and don't want the public to have time to consider the implications of such approval. But to subvert any oversight by slashing the budget is bordering on criminal.

There were very strong suggestions that this is exactly what Harper wanted to do in Elections Canada's investigation of the Robocall Scandal. The constant media coverage prevented him from doing it there. One can only hope that whatever the outcome of this proposal there will not be the stink of government interference lingering over the decision.

Government can do anything only if we let them.
Comment by Ralph on 13th March 2012
If the Canadian electorate did not see all this Conservative hidden agenda coming then I'm afraid they have gotten what they voted for. I'm quite positive many of you staunch environmentalists, First Nations and anti business everything, did just that. Count yourself as one of the many voters who have elected a right wing Canadian Republican President, oh excuse me I meant to say Prime Minister.
Comment by Robert Sallows on 13th March 2012
This government has made me ashamed to call myself a Canadian