OTTAWA – On Wednesday, October 23rd 2013, Phil McColeman, Member of Parliament for Brant, launched the new Conservative Housing and Construction Caucus on Parliament Hill and was elected to the position of Chairman.
“The housing industry is a key driver of our local economy. When our housing sector is healthy and succeeding, it means good paying jobs and spin-off benefits for all of Brant; not to mention quality and affordable homes for our families,” Said McColeman.
Prior to entering politics, Phil owned and operated property development and construction companies that specialized in residential and commercial renovation work. In this capacity, he received numerous industry awards and served as President for both the Brantford and Ontario Home Builder’s Association.
McColeman knows that having a strong and vibrant housing industry is critical in order to ensure Canada’s long-term economic prosperity. The housing industry is a major contributor to a healthy and strong Canadian economy and a strong local economy in Brant.
The single biggest investment most Canadian households will ever make is in their home. In fact, it is estimated that a house, on average, is worth 40% of a family’s assets, which is the equivalency of their pensions, insurances and investments combined. From an industry perspective, according to Canadian Homebuilders Association (CHBA), total spending on residential construction and renovations totals over $113 billion dollars annually and the construction industry helps employ over 850,00 Canadians; with many more employed in related finance and insurance careers. Overall, the housing market accounts for around 20% of Canada’s GDP.
However, McColeman and some of his colleagues have come to believe strongly that the housing industry remains under-represented on Parliament Hill. That is why McColeman has taken the initiative to elevate the industry on the national stage with a new, active and engaged Housing Caucus.
The housing industry matters; and the new Conservative Housing and Construction Caucus will exist to work with employers, workers, advocacy organizations and stakeholders to represent and advocate for policies and legislation that promotes a healthy and vibrant housing industry in Canada. This creates an exciting new opportunity for representatives of the housing sector in Brant and across Canada to have their voices heard on Parliament Hill
“This new Caucus is something that my office has been working hard to prepare throughout the summer so that we could hit the ground running as soon as MP’s returned to Parliament Hill,” said McColeman. “Our inaugural meeting was a roaring success with over 20 Members of Parliament who attended and joined as permanent members, and a very fruitful discussion of the possibilities before us as we begin to move forward.”
Also present at the inaugural meeting were representatives from the Canadian Home Builders Association (CHBA), the Ontario Home Builders Association (OHBA), the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and the Canadian Association of Accredited Mortgage Professionals (CAAMP). The organizations offered the new Caucus their full endorsement and each gave a brief initial presentation on some of the issues and concerns that they hope the Caucus will consider tackling in the days ahead.
Ottawa, October 24, 2013 – Phil McColeman, Member of Parliament for Brant, was elected as the Chairman of the House of Common’s Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and Status of Persons with Disabilities (HUMA) in a vote of his peers on Parliament Hill today.
In its first meeting to of this session of Parliament, the 12-member HUMA Committee – a permanent Standing Committee composed of MP’s from all parties represented in the House of Commons – unanimously agreed to elect McColeman to the position of Chairman. His election was declared following a motion put forth by Jinny Sims, NDP MP for Newton-North Delta.
McColeman was a permanent member of the HUMA committee in the previous session of Parliament and simultaneously worked hard to advance a Private Members Motion in the House of Commons to create employment opportunities for persons with disabilities.
“I am honoured and excited to accept the role of Chairman of this important committee and I thank my colleagues for the confidence and trust they have placed in me,” said McColeman. “Much of the work that happens at this committee covers matters that are top of mind for Canadians today; including employment, skills training and labour challenges, so it is an exciting prospect to Chair this committee as it tackles some very important issues in the days ahead.”
Parliament’s permanent standing committees are empowered to study and report to the House on all matters relating to the mandate, management, organization and operation of the departments assigned to them. In the case of the HUMA committee, these departments include the Ministry of Employment and Social Development and the Ministry of Labour.
The Committee examines, enquires into and reports on matters referred to it by the House of Commons, including legislation, departmental activities and spending. As well, the Committee studies and reports on topics HUMA itself chooses to examine relating to the mandate, management operation of ESDC and the Ministry of Labour.
“This new role will be a new challenge,” said McColeman. “I’m encouraged by the trust that my colleagues from all parties demonstrated with this election and I am eager to seize this wonderful new opportunity.”
Deeper trade with the European Union will bring good jobs, economic growth and greater long-term prosperity to workers and businesses in key sectors of the Brantford/Brant economy, says McColeman.
Brantford, Ontario, October 18, 2013 –Phil McColeman, Member of Parliament for Brant, highlighted today the many benefits of the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced the conclusion of CETA negotiations on today in Brussels, Belgium.
“This historic agreement with the European Union is a big win for workers, businesses and families right here in the Brant riding,” said MP McColeman. “Hard-working people of southwestern Ontario stand to reap substantial benefits, especially in key sectors of our local economy like our manufacturing and food processing sector which now will have unfettered access to a market of over 500 million people.”
In addition to tariff elimination, CETA provides improved access to EU markets for Canadian goods and services, greater certainty, transparency and protection for investments, and new opportunities in EU procurement markets.
“CETA is an historic, 21st century, gold-standard agreement that is the foundation of the most ambitious trade expansion plan in our nation’s history,” said the Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway. “It is an agreement that will bring benefits to a wide range of sectors in every region of the country and is clear proof of our government’s commitment to opening new, large and dynamic markets to our exporters, workers and businesses.”
An earlier joint study concluded that CETA could bring a 20-percent boost in bilateral trade and a $12-billion annual increase to Canada’s economy. That is the equivalent of adding $1,000 to the average Canadian household’s income or 80,000 new jobs to the Canadian economy.
Conservative government ministers and Members of Parliament are holding events across Canada this week to highlight the widespread benefits that will be generated by the agreement in every region of the country.
The EU is Canada’s second-largest trading partner and the world’s largest integrated economy, with more than 500 million consumers and a GDP of $17 trillion. CETA is by far, Canada’s most ambitious trade initiative, broader and deeper in scope than the historic North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).