The town of High River, Alta., may be a few thousand kilometres outside the boundaries of his Ottawa Valley riding, but that hasn't stopped Conservative MP Scott Reid from invoking his parliamentary privilege in an effort to shed more light on forced entries and gun seizures during last year's floods.

Earlier this week, Reid submitted a lengthy written request for details on the emergency response procedures followed by the RCMP during the evacuation of the area, including just how many people in need of assistance were located as a result of the town-wide search.

He also wants to know whether police could have used thermal imaging technology to check for the presence of people "or domesticated animals" without physically entering the buildings, "and if not, why not, and how this determination was reached."

Finally, he asked for copies of all communications, "including, but not limited to mail, email, fax, text and letters" exchanged between RCMP members, and with outside government officials, on ending the state of emergency in the area, as well as "the denial of re-entry of citizens in all affected areas."

Given his well-known libertarian leanings, it's no surprise that Reid would take a keen interest in the ongoing controversy of what some local residents have described as the "gun grab."

One of just two Conservative MPs on the Order Paper list

What is unusual, however, is his decision to turn to the Order Paper in an effort to get answers.

At press time, Reid is one of just two Conservative MPs on the list of pending Order Paper questions.

(The other, Mike Wallace, has asked how much it cost the government to respond to the first 253 questions posed during the last session, virtually all of which were filed by opposition members.)

Meanwhile, opposition MPs have been increasingly vocal about the quality of answers that they've been getting in reply, and have made several attempts in recent months to get House Speaker Andrew Scheer to intervene, so far without success.

"I do this sort of thing from time to time, when I think it would be a useful way of getting some information onto the public record," Reid told CBC News.

"You can see the complex nature of the question. A minister would not have any direct knowledge of this kind of detailed ground-level operation. If I asked him, he’d just have to forward it on."

As for how optimistic he is that he'll actually get a substantive reply, he said he deliberately worded the question "so as to preclude the possibility of a less-than-enlightening response."

"I have my fingers crossed that this will do the trick."

Earlier query sought cost of NCC poinsettia budget

This is actually the second time that Reid has turned to the Order Paper since his party formed government.

In 2008, he asked how much it cost the National Capital Commission to send "poinsettias and other Christmas gifts" to MPs, senators, as well as provincial legislators in Ontario and Quebec and various other municipal officials.

The answer to that query isn't available online, but according to media reports, Reid eventually learned that the agency had spent $10,000 on holiday bouquets the previous year, and more than $46,000 over the past decade.

As for whether he'll be as satisfied by the response this time around, he'll likely have to wait until the fall to find out.

The full text of Q540, which has to be answered within 45 days:

Q-540 — June 3, 2014 — Mr. Reid (Lanark—Frontenac—Lennox and Addington) — With regard to the operations of the RCMP in and around the Town of High River, Alberta, between June 20, 2013, and July 12, 2013: (a) what special procedures and measures were implemented, and pursuant to what statutory and policy authorities and declarations were those special procedures and measures implemented; (b) what were the circumstances that informed the decision to engage in a door-to-door search of residences and non-residential buildings, what procedures or special measures were implemented to engage in this search, and pursuant to what statutory or policy authorities were those procedures or special measures implemented; (c) what were the circumstances that informed the decision to engage in entries through the use of force during the course of the door-to-door search of residences and non-residential buildings, what procedures or special measures were implemented to engage in the use of force, and pursuant to what statutory or policy authorities were those procedures or special measures implemented; (d) what organization or organizations were consulted by or provided advice to the RCMP respecting the need for and the conduct of the searches referred to in (b) and (c), (i) what information was sought, if any, by the RCMP from each organization, (ii) what information was provided, if any, to the RCMP by each organization; (e) what criteria were used to determine which residences and non-residential buildings to enter during the conduct of the searches referred to in (b) and (c); (f) what was the total number of residences that were entered by the RCMP during the searches referred to in (b) and what was the total number of residences that were entered by the RCMP during the searches referred to in (c); (g) what was the total number of non-residential buildings that were entered by the RCMP during the searches referred to in (b) and what was the total number of non-residential buildings that were entered by the RCMP during the searches referred to in (c); (h) were any residences or non-residential buildings referred to in (b) and (c) entered multiple times or on multiple dates and, if so, how many residences were entered multiple times or on multiple dates, and for what purposes were the initial entries and subsequent entries made, (i) what measures were taken by the RCMP, regarding each residence entered through the use of force by the RCMP, to ensure that residences were secured against further entry after the RCMP finished searching each residence; (j) did the RCMP allow anyone who was not an RCMP police officer to enter residences during the searches referred to in (b) and (c), (i) if (j) is answered in the affirmative, on a residence-by-residence basis, whom (by name, position and organization) did the RCMP allow into residences and for what purpose, (ii) if (j) is answered in the affirmative, have the home owners been made aware that non-RCMP personnel were allowed into their homes by the RCMP; (k) what information did the RCMP possess prior to the searches referred to in (b) and (c), regarding the presence, in residences and non-residential buildings in and around the Town of High River, of firearms, firearms ammunition, non-firearm weapons, and weapon accessories; (l) in how many cases were legally-stored firearms rendered illegally-stored, as a result of forced entries into residences by the RCMP; (m) during the course of the searches referred to in (b) and (c), what statutory authorization allowed the removal of, (i) legally-stored firearms from residences, (ii) illegally-stored firearms from residences, (iii) legally-stored ammunition from residences, (iv) illegally-stored ammunition from residences, (v) legally-stored weapons other than firearms from residences, (vi) illegally-stored weapons other than firearms from residences, (vii) legally-stored weapon accessories from residences, (viii) illegally-stored weapon accessories from residences; (n) how many of the items mentioned in (m)(i) through (viii), were removed by the RCMP; (o) did the RCMP remove any legally-owned items, other than firearms, ammunition, non-firearms weapons, or weapon accessories from any residences or non-residential buildings during the course of the searches referred to in (b) and (c) and, if so, how many items were removed, what were they, and what statutory and policy authorities allowed the RCMP to do so; (p) did the RCMP remove any illegal items, objects or substances, other than firearms, ammunition, non-firearms weapons, or weapons accessories, from any residences or non-residential buildings during the course of the searches referred to in (b) and (c) and, if so, what items were removed; (q) was a warrant or warrants for the search of residences and non-residential buildings or removal of any personal property, including but not limited to firearms, firearms ammunition, non-firearm weapons, and weapon accessories, ever requested, (i) if (q) is answered affirmatively, are copies of the requests available, (ii) if (q) is answered in the negative, why was no request for a warrant or warrants referred to in (q) made; (r) was a warrant or warrants for the search of residences and non-residential buildings or removal of any personal property, including but not limited to firearms, firearms ammunition, non-firearm weapons and weapon accessories, ever issued, (i) if (r) is answered affirmatively, are copies of the warrant or warrants available, (ii) if (r) is answered in the negative, why was the warrant or warrants not issued; (s) what was the total number of RCMP police officers who took part in the searches referred to in (b) and (c) and were the RCMP police officers conducting the searches referred to in (b) the same as the RCMP conducting the searches in (c) and, if not, what was the reason for the difference; (t) what are the names, ranks, positions, units, and detachments of the officer or officers who authorized or otherwise initiated the (i) searches referred to in (b) and (c), (ii) removal of legally-stored firearms from residences, (iii) removal of illegally-stored firearms from residences, (iv) removal of legally-stored ammunition from residences, (v) removal of illegally-stored ammunition from residences, (vi) removal of legally-stored non-firearms weapons from residences, (vii) removal of illegally-stored non-firearms weapons from residences, (viii) removal of legally-stored weapon accessories from residences, (ix) removal of illegally-stored weapon accessories from residences; (u) did the RCMP gather any information over the course of the searches referred to in (b) and (c) and if so, (i) what information was gathered regarding any firearms, (ii) what information was gathered regarding any ammunition, (iii) what information was gathered regarding any weapon accessories, (iv) what information was gathered regarding any weapons, other than firearms, (v) has any form of database or information record (electronic or physical) been developed which could identify any of the residents, or residences, in and around the Town of High River, based on the presence of firearms, weapons, ammunition or accessories located during the conduct of the searches referred to in (b) and (c), (vi) is any of the information referred to in (u)(i) through (iv) still in existence and, if so, what information is still accessible by the RCMP, or any other government organization, (vii) under what statutory and policy authority did the RCMP have the legal right to gather any information referenced in (u)(i) through (iv), (viii) under what statutory and policy authority does the RCMP have the legal right to keep any information referenced in (u)(i) through (iv), (v) have any charges been laid based on any of the RCMP's findings from the searches referred to in (b) and (c) and, so, what are the charges that have been laid and how many of each type of charge have been laid; (w) have any members of the RCMP been charged or internally-disciplined, and to what degree, regarding, (i)the forced entry into residences or non-residential buildings in and around the Town of High River, (ii) the removal of any items from residences or non-residential buildings in and around the Town of High River; (x) what were the reasons (broken down by case) for (i) all entries (forced or otherwise) into each residence and non-residential building, between the dates of June 24 and July 12, 2013, (ii) all the searches of each residence and non-residential building between the dates of June 24 and July 12, 2013, (iii) the removal of any firearms, ammunition, non-firearms weapons and accessories from each residences and non-residential building, between the dates of June 24 and July 12, 2013; (y) what are the contents of all communications, hard copy or electronic ,including but not limited to, mail, email, fax, text, letter, that have been exchanged between any members of the RCMP, as well as between the RCMP and any government officials, including but not limited to municipal governments, the Alberta provincial government and associated agencies and Crown corporations, the federal government and associated government agencies and Crown corporations, regarding the requirement of the searches referred to in (b) and (c), the conduct of the searches referred to in (b) and (c) and the removal of any items during the course of the searches referred to in (b) and (c); and (z) what is the source of the information provided in the responses to (a) through (y)?