Thursday, December 10, 2009

Amendment to Canadian Bill C-51 defeated on point of order

Once again, attempts to have the Canadian Government do the right thing and rule that pension fund claims should take priority in bankruptcy cases, has been defeated. It would appear that the business lobby has been able to keep the change off the table, and so the prospect of our underfunded pension taking a place of priority when Nortel finally disappears is dead in the water. That's not to say there won't be other attempts, but time is running out, and the Canadian Government doesn't seem to have any concern for us and the impact this will mean on our lives and our standard of living. For all of you who have voting rights in Canada, make sure your MP knows what you think of this despicable treatment.

Yesterday's ruling as follows (from Hansard):

This said, the summary of Bill C-51 indicates that the amendments it proposes
to the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act are "to correct unintended consequences
resulting from the inaccurate coordination of two amendment Acts." The
amendments proposed by the twelfth report, on the other hand, deal with unfunded
pensions of retirees and employees when a corporation files for bankruptcy,
placing them on the same level as creditors. Without in any way speaking to the
desirability of the changes proposed by the report, they exceed the quite
limited nature of the amendments the bill proposes.

The ruling is that the point of order is established, and the amendments that
the report proposes are out of order.

Hon. Pierrette Ringuette: Your Honour, if I may, before you put the question
for third reading, I do not agree with your ruling. Nevertheless, I will accept
it. With the blessing of 6 million Canadian workers and retirees who have
underfunded pension plans, I wish all of you a very merry Christmas.

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