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Meet Senator

Claudette Tardif

The Hon. Claudette  Tardif, B.Ed., M.Ed., Ph.D. Senator Tardif has been a member of the Senate of Canada since March 24, 2005. She was appointed Deputy Leader of the Official Opposition in the Senate in January 2007.

Statements & Hansard

Senator Eggleton Raises Concern for Infrastructure Deficit in Cities

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Statement made on 05 December 2007 by Senator Art Eggleton

Hon. Art Eggleton:

Honourable senators, I rise today to speak about a growing problem in Canada, a problem that, if not dealt with, will cripple our ability to compete in the world economy.

I am speaking about the increasing infrastructure deficit that is found in Canadian cities and communities.

A recent report published by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities pegged the deficit at over $123 billion. Honourable senators, this deficit affects Canadians in every city and every community across this country. It is reflected in the roads we drive on, the pipes that deliver water to our homes, the public transportation that we use and it is the places where our kids play.

Currently, an estimated 28 per cent of our infrastructure is more than 80 years old and, shockingly, 79 per cent of the life expectancy of Canada's infrastructure has been used up.

The $123 billion figure can be broken down into such areas as water and waste water systems, $31 billion; transportation, $21.7 billion; waste management, $7.7 billion; and community, recreational, cultural and social infrastructure, $40.2 billion. Furthermore, this number does not even include what is needed in new infrastructure investment.

Honourable colleagues, more worrisome than the numbers was the reaction of the Harper government. Instead of reacting by saying they want to help, the federal Minister of Finance called mayors and local politicians "whiners."

Honourable senators, that is not leadership and this does not help to solve the problems that plague our cities and communities. With record surpluses at the federal level, it is time that the government invests and helps our cities and communities.

Problems may be found at the local level, but they are not owned by the cities and communities. These are problems that are owned by all Canadians and need to be solved by all Canadians. We in all orders of government need to work together to address the infrastructure situation.

Recent Statements from Liberal Senators

Business of the Senate

19 Jun, 2014 | By Senator Joan Fraser | Colleagues, I'm rising to speak on behalf of my leader, the Leader of the Opposition, Senator Cowan, who had to be in Halifax tonight on public business. I must tell you that when I called him to say we were going to be adjourning for the summer tonight, he was, I could tell, quite irritated, not because he wanted us all to go on working like galley slaves but because he had already written a speech that he wanted to give tomorrow morning.

Lighthouses as Irreplaceable Symbols of Maritime Heritage—Inquiry

19 Jun, 2014 | By Senator Jim Munson | Thank you, Your Honour, and my apologies to Senator Champagne.

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19 Jun, 2014 | By Senator Joan Fraser | Colleagues, I know that Senator Jaffer was preparing to close this debate but, before she did that, I just had to say how terribly important the subject she has raised is.

The Senate—Promoting and Defending Causes that Concern the Public Interest—Inquiry

19 Jun, 2014 | By Senator Jim Munson | Honourable senators, I am looking for a bit of love and empathy at this late hour because I do have a speech, but you have to understand that, in the interest of having dignified departures for our five senators this week, I gave up my time to make sure that we were able to celebrate the departures of Senator Buth, Senator Segal, Senator Callbeck, Senator Dallaire and Senator Champagne.

Study on Status of Canada's International Security and Defence Relations

19 Jun, 2014 | By Senator Grant Mitchell | So, you thought you weren't going to hear from me? Well, I fooled you! So there! I rise in support of this report by the Defence Committee recommending that Canada become involved in ballistic missile defence with NORAD. I congratulate Senator Lang and other members of the committee for what I think was great collaborative work, completely non-partisan, very extensive and detailed with intense research.
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