Budget bill close to being approved
The Centennial Flame burns on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Thursday, May 3, 2012. (The Canadian Press/Sean Kilpatrick)
The Canadian Press
Published Wednesday, December 5, 2012 10:57AM EST
OTTAWA - The Harper government's massive budget bill is moving through its final stage today in the House of Commons.
The Conservatives voted down hundreds of proposed opposition amendments to Bill C-45 last night in a mini-marathon voting session.
After about six hours of voting, the more than 400 pages of legislation moved to third reading with no changes.
Debate is expected to continue today after question period, with a vote possible tonight.
It's expected then to pass to the senate, and then become law before MPs rise for their Christmas break.
The Opposition New Democrats say the Harper government will be held accountable for the bill in the next federal election in 2015.
The Tories maintain the bill will help create jobs.
Among the provisions in Bill C-45 are an extension of a hiring credit for small businesses, changes to land management on aboriginal reserves and pay raises for judges.
But critics say the bill removes environmental oversight of waterways.