Archive for October, 2010

Action plan no triumph without job numbers

October 26, 2010

AG report also outlines serious Treasury Board mismanagement of conflict rules

Auditor General Sheila Fraser’s report on Canada’s Economic Action Plan shows the Conservatives still can’t answer the most important question about its stimulus funding: how many jobs were created?

Fraser also highlighted two recurring New Democrat criticisms of the action plan: projects are starting late and running behind schedule; and the environmental assessment process was gutted without cause.

Fraser’s report says the government could not say how many jobs were created, and that job numbers in the report are based on “largely anecdotal” and unreliable evidence.

“It’s a testament to this government’s incompetence if we’re applauding them for merely getting funding out the door without completely bungling the process,” said New Democrat Leader Jack Layton. “I expect the government to provide more than anecdotes to show their action plan is putting Canadians back to work.”

On the government’s management of conflicts of interest, Fraser says departments “need to do a better job,” and have failed to properly manage conflicts of interest in the public service.

“This government has been dogged with conflict of interest allegations, so it comes as no surprise they’ve failed to live up to their promises to do things differently,” said Layton.

”Not only have they badly mismanaged accountability in the public service, they haven’t yet implemented their own Accountability Act rules,” concluded Layton. “Even today—despite repeated attacks on the Liberals’ poor record—they are happy to continue to use these sponsorship scandal-era conflict-of-interest rules.”

Bell supports call for independent expert review on Raven Coal

October 26, 2010

The following letter to the editor was submitted on October 26, 2010.

October 26, 2010

Letter to the Editor

The public has clearly demonstrated their interest and concerns regarding the Raven Underground Coal Mine proposed here in the Comox Valley. CoalWatch makes a sound argument for the strongest form of environmental assessment. 

Coal Watch says, “We cannot take this lightly. We need the strongest possible environmental assessment and comprehensive mapping of aquifers in this region before any further consideration is given to the mine proposal.”   And they are correct, we must all, as stewards of the environment speak now and call on the Federal government to  act in the interest of the environment that they have  a duty to protect. 

Vancouver Island North MP- John Duncan needs to listen to his constituents and immediately call on his Cabinet colleague, the Minister of the Environment, to refer this matter to an independent expert review panel. Let’s not let this issue be another case of this government denying the facts to the public to suit their purposes.

Catherine Bell- NDP Candidate, Vancouver Island North

NDP Home Heating Campaign

October 26, 2010