Latest Headlines

PM treats taxpayers' purse as his own wallet

September 23, 2016 6:58 A.M.
Moving is expensive, but apparently moving to Ottawa is even more expensive for Trudeau staffers. (Expedia image)

IF THERE'S anyone who is surprised the prime minister's staff expensed more than $200,000 in moving expenses, they haven't been paying attention.

Justin Trudeau has a long history of considering the taxpayers' purse as his own wallet, from the days when he was a youngster with Katimavik where he enjoyed lavish dinners and hotel rooms to putting nannies on the public payroll, to shelling out for his family and various hangers on to preen in Washington.

No expense was spared, because it was, after all, someone else's money.

Now comes word his principal secretary and chief of staff were reimbursed for selling their homes and moving to Ottawa. One billed the taxpayer $127,000, the other $80,000.

Some of this covered legal fees and commissions for selling their homes, which they both sold for hundreds of thousands more than they paid for them.

And yes, there is a policy allowing for government employees to claim moving expenses but, good gosh, $127,000, $80,000…. you can move an entire house for that kind of a cost and have spare change.

We're hearing the prime minister himself is said to have signed off on these expenses, continuing his binge spending, clearly oblivious to how hard people have to work to provide the tax dollars he and his government are so readily blowing out the door.

It adds a new dimension to the image of politicians at the trough but who's really to blame? The guy with his hand in the piggy bank, or those who gave him the key. As the old axiom goes… fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.

Listen to Jim Harrison's editorials weekdays on Radio NL, and to the Jim Harrison Show at 9:08 a.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Contact him at jharrison@radionl.com.

Aroy says:
September 26, 2016 07:51am

Leaving politics aside the sums claimed for a move from Toronto to Ottawa is obscene!!!. The fact that it comes from the public purse makes it worse.

Reply

Emails will not be published

Aroy says:
September 25, 2016 04:59pm

Leaving politics aside the sums claimed for a move from Toronto to Ottawa is obscene!!!. The fact that it comes from the public purse makes it worse.

Reply

Emails will not be published

Deadbeat says:
September 23, 2016 01:54pm

What are you insinuating Jim, that we should treat our elected heads of state like paupers? Send them to the UN with brown bag lunches? If you want to discuss government largess, let's talk about the millions of tax dollars being handed to sun peaks and the government subsidizing Walmart employees wages. And don't even get me started on bombardier and the billions in tax dollars being handed to corporations and banks.

Reply

Emails will not be published

David Johnson says:
September 23, 2016 12:34pm

As stated by these two as they returned the disputed part of these expenses: "... followed all the rules of a federal relocation policy that's been in place for senior political staff and public servants for decades, noting that the prime minister has now asked Treasury Board to craft a new policy."

Done, dealt with, lets move on ... and interesting that Jim didnt mention this little detail. It is the Liberal transparency rules that allowed this information to get out, yet the Harper staff expense files are sealed, and still Conservative members of the house jump on it, as if their party is the clean one.

I'll take transparency = changing and updating old policy, over sealed = hiding from transparency any day.

Reply

Emails will not be published

Lee Kenney says:
September 23, 2016 11:04am

Gosh , would a 90,000 cheque make the problem go away ?

Reply

Emails will not be published

Sean Lane says:
September 23, 2016 10:25am

It is reward time at the Liberal Party HQ. His generosity with other peoples money knows no bounds.

Reply

Emails will not be published

Grouchy 1 says:
September 23, 2016 10:25am

Come on Jim, get over it already. We all know now that your Mr Harper is long gone , you need to deal with this. I'd be willing to bet that if you looked, the same things happened under Harper also. Is it right ? No, but to highlight one leader while ignoring what happened under another is wrong too.

Reply

Emails will not be published

Leave a Reply

Emails will not be published