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Wayne Easter, MP

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Representing You in Ottawa

I am committed to bringing your voice to Ottawa, by ensuring your concerns are heard and working with you to create opportunities for growth in our province.

Conference Board’s Report on PEI

Posted on July 27, 2014

ConferenceBoardOfCanadaThe Conference Board of Canada is a treasure trove of great information, including about the economic prospects of the provinces. In a recent Conference Board report, Alicia Macdonald makes the following comments about the Island:

  • Growth in the PEI economy is expected to slow in the near term, with expected real GDP growth of 1.3% in 2014 and 1.9% in 2015, down from 2.1% in 2013.
  • New marketing efforts and increased crop diversification will lead the agricultural sector to be a “steady” contribution to near-term economic growth, “gaining 2.6 per cent in 2014 and another 1.8 per cent in 2015”.
  • A drop in potato production in North America and Europe should help to put upward pressure on prices for the crop.
  • With “lacklustre” demand for potato products, the Island’s farming sector has diversified in recent years, increasing the acreage in grains and oilseeds.
  • The hundreds of beef producers on the Island should benefit from the new “Prince Edward Island Certified Beef” designation, which should help to “position” the Island’s beef sector for future growth.
  • Regarding the Island’s fishery, “large declines” are expected again in 2014, following on 2013’s “disappointing” season.
  • Real output in the Island’s fishing and trapping sector fell 12.9% in 2013, with similar output expected for 2014.
  • The fishing sector is being negatively affected by such factors as large catches by Maine’s lobster fishery and reduced demand for luxury products in some countries and regions related to the recent global recession.
  • With the declines in the fishing sector in 2013 and 2014, seafood product manufacturing is not expected to do well in the near term. However, other food manufacturing and in other parts of the manufacturing sector should do well.
  • Employment growth on the Island was strong in 2013, with an estimated 1,440 new jobs created, but is expected to slow as economic growth slows, although “strong wage gains” are anticipated in the near term, with positive implications for growth in household income that can support consumer spending.
  • Consumer spending growth is likely to occur also as a result of stronger population growth. While net interprovincial migration to the Island was negative in 2013, it is expected to be flat in 2014 and 2015.
  • Over the 2007 to 2012 period, PEI was third-last among the provinces in terms of productivity growth, and the Island has the lowest level of labour productivity in Canada.

Red Tape Reduction: The First Federal Scorecard

Posted on July 21, 2014

January 2014 was a busy month for those with an interest in reducing government red tape. On January 29, 2014, the President of the Treasury Board introduced Bill C-21, known as the “Red Tape Reduction Act”. In January, “The 2012–2013 Scorecard Report: Implementing the Red Tape Reduction Action Plan” was released.

The document discusses the management of federal regulations in Canada, the one-for-one rule that is the focus of Bill C-21, the small business lens, forward regulatory plans, and service standards regarding high-volume regulatory authorizations. I believe that regulations have a place in helping to achieve sound public policies, but also that we have an obligation to ensure regulations exist for legitimate reasons. Poorly thought-out regulations can be costly and damaging, so this is an area where government needs to get it right.

While I urge Islanders and other Canadians to read the report and to share their thoughts with me, I’d like to provide my thoughts about what I see as some of the highlights in each of these areas:

Management of federal regulations in Canada

  • Regulations are a policy tool that enable economic activity and protect health, safety, security, and our environment
  • Parliament delegates regulatory authority to people and groups such as the Governor in Council, ministers, and administrative agencies

The one-for-one rule

  • The one-for-one rule states that every time a new regulation is created, an older regulation must be removed
  • In 2012-2013, the overall regulatory burden was reduced by close to $3 million.
  • Businesses will save an estimated 98,000 hours each year in dealing with regulatory red tape as a result of the one-for-one rule
  • Fishermen had their administrative burden reduced by $152,453 because of the elimination of rules requiring them to identify their fishing gear and vessels using department-supplied marking devices such as tags

The small business lends

  • It is too early to conclude whether the small business lends is having the intended effect, as regulations with significant business impacts can take months or years to design and implement

Forward regulatory plans

  • In the spring of 2013, regulators posted 32 forward regulatory plans collectively identifying and describing 460 planned regulatory initiatives to be introduced within a 24-month period

Service standards regarding high-volume regulatory authorizations

  • In the spring of 2013, regulators posted service standards for 24 high-volume regulatory authorizations and processes
  • Beginning in June 2014, regulators must annually report their performance against their publicly-available service standards for high-volume regulatory authorizations

Economics of Policing – National Mental Health Strategy Recommendation

Posted on July 3, 2014

In my role as Public Safety Critic, I sit on the House of Commons Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security, which has recently published a report on the Economics of Policing, trying to understand rising policing costs across the country, and recommend solutions.

Some conclusions are that:

The Committee recognizes that crime prevention and early intervention have social and economic benefits and recommends that the government makes further investments in these areas.

The Committee agrees that issues of mental health and addiction are an increasing challenge to the work of police officers, and recognizes the success of the community mobilization model in reducing crime rates, reducing calls for service, and allowing police officers to focus on core policing responsibilities.

I was pleased to submit a supplementary report recommending a National Mental Health Strategy to address concerns brought forward by law enforcement. The full report can be found at: http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?DocId=6583312&Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=2&File=9

More information about the repot can be found at: http://www.publicsafety.gc.ca/cnt/cntrng-crm/plcng/cnmcs-plcng/index-eng.aspx

From Soil to Stomach: Why Food Traceability Matters

Posted on June 25, 2014

As a farmer, consumer, and your Member of Parliament, I take agriculture and our food supply chain very seriously. Some reading from the Conference Board of […]

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Paying Tribute to Jack MacAndrew

Posted on June 17, 2014

Today I had the honour of rising in the House to speak about the exceptional life of Jack MacAndrew (click to view video)   “Mr. Speaker, […]

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Kensington’s Centennial

Posted on June 10, 2014

June 9th, I had the pleasure of rising in the House to congratulate Kensington on their centennial [see video here]: “Mr. Speaker, I rise to celebrate […]

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MP Shuck Off Challenge

Posted on June 6, 2014

Proud to have won the MP Shuck Off Challenge this week. All MPs in attendance were fantastic!  

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Holding the Government to Account

Posted on May 30, 2014

Yesterday I delivered two questions to the government. The first was on the lack of import restrictions on spent fowl, which threatens the quality of poultry […]

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A Tribute to Roland Larkin

Posted on May 30, 2014

I had the honour of rising in the House of Commons yesterday to pay tribute to Roland Larkin, a great Islander. http://youtu.be/ddSB2QCY7sQ  

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The Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement

Posted on May 28, 2014

Had the pleasure of meeting with the Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement. They’re doing great work on the front-lines accelerating healthcare improvement and targeting and then reducing […]

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Malpeque Constituency Office:
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