14 December 2006
Prime Minister Stephen Harper today noted that "the Senate has just finished its session and four new pieces of legislation are in the process of receiving royal assent from the Governor General and will become the law of the land."
The four Bills are as follows: Bill C-24, to resolve a longstanding trade dispute on softwood lumber; Bill C-25, to amend Canada’s proceeds of crime and terrorist financing; Bill C-19, to crack down on street racing; and Bill C-17, to amend the Judges Act and other acts in relation to courts.
Canada’s New Government has delivered on its promise to the softwood lumber industry. Bill C-24, under the Canada-U.S. Softwood Lumber Agreement, provides at least seven to nine years of stability, ends years of costly litigation and brings new economic certainty to those whose livelihoods depend on the softwood lumber industry.
"The softwood lumber agreement is a long-term 7-year deal. It gives Canadian producers stable and predictable access to the U.S. market. It returns more than $5 billion in duties to Canadian producers, and it allows different implementation options across the country," said the Prime Minister.
The Government has delivered on its promise to establish additional measures to battle crime and terrorism. Bill C-25 amends Canada’s Proceeds of Crime and Terrorist Financing Act, which significantly strengthens Canada’s ability to monitor and act on money laundering whether it’s for terrorist activities or other illegal activities in Canada.
"Canada’s New Government will continue to be relentless in its battle against money laundering and terrorism financing," said Prime Minister Harper. "One of the best ways of putting these criminals out of business is to starve them of the funds they need to finance their activities. Our amendments will improve our ability to act decisively."
Bill C-19 demonstrates the Government’s commitment to help protect Canada’s streets and communities from the threat of street racing. It amends the Criminal Code to create targeted, new offences to provide enhanced maximum penalties of incarceration for the most serious street racing offences. It also creates mandatory minimum periods of driving prohibition for those convicted of street racing and increases the length of the driving prohibitions for repeat offenders.
In addition to the four above-mentioned Bills, six other Bills were granted Royal Assent last week: the Public Health Agency of Canada Act (Bill C-5); theTax Conventions Implementation Act (Bill S-5); the First Nations Jurisdiction over Education in British Columbia Act (Bill C-34); the Appropriation Act No. 2 (Bill C-38); and the Federal Accountability Act (Bill C-2) – the toughest anti-corruption law in Canadian history.
The Federal Accountability Act was one of the Government’s top five priorities since taking office. The Act, which makes substantive changes to 45 statutes and amends over 100 others, delivers on the Government’s promise to put in place a five year lobbying ban, to eliminate corporate and union donations, and to protect whistleblowers, among other reforms.
Getting things done for all Canadians is what Canada’s New Government promised and it is exactly what we’ve delivered. Henceforth, these ten pieces of legislation are now Canadian law.