Friday, October 14, 2005

SK: High Flying MLA's

The travel budgets of the Saskatchewan government MLA's increased over last year. In 2003-04 the travel expenditures were $569,240, they rose to $762,195.

Read more here: Saskatoon StarPhoenix.

11 comments:

Chad Moats said...

The idea behind the article is good, the problem is that they don't mention the fact the Sask party out spent the government in this matter of the total expenses the Sask Party was responsible for 54% of it. Read more at my blog.

David MacLean said...

I already did, and straightened "for the record" what we did and did not say.

You are wrong about the CTF being soft on the Saskatchewan Party, or any other "conservative" party in Canada.

And you will realize your wrongness if the Saskatchewan Party ever forms a government. We will be the NDP's best friend -- a group you will love to hate.

Take a look at what we do in BC and Alberta.

Chad Moats said...

Why isn't the onus on Don McMorris for spending >$100k for travel to Indian Head ?
The problem with Dave is he is blinded by ideology and political affiliations. He says he wasn't asked those questions, I'm not surprised that CTV would not ask such questions, it's not in their best interest. Dave MacLean, and by extension the CTF, are presenting raw data as overall fact without taking into account any other factors or comparisons to equivalent industries. This is to manufacture a wedge issue that can be used by their political cohorts in an attempt to gain power. Give him a call, ask him the hard questions.

David MacLean said...

You are mixing your issues here Chad.

What do you wnat to gripe about? The fact the media didn't pay enought attention to Sask Party expenses? That's a legitimate issue, but it's not our fault.

In fact, I haven't even seen the numbers for either party.

As for absenteeism, we have looked at other industries and compared.

It's even in the documents we released.

According to statistics Canada labour force stats, public administration has higher absenteeism rates than every other sector save health care (also government) and warehousing and transportation.

Go to statscan, download the labour force stats.

Chad Moats said...

Would that be because they get more sick days then the others, you mentioned. I would like to see it as a percentage of sick days used and unpaid sick days taken.
My guess is that they either have to work when ill or not get paid.
Also, it is your responsibility to present all the facts not just the ones you want to spin.
As for MLA expenses, how could you not see the Sask Party expenses, they are on the same page. Did you even read the document ?

David MacLean said...

I've said this several times. I gave interviews to CBC and Canadian Press on this issue and was asked exclusively about Minister Belanger.

Chad Moats said...

So it is beyond you to mention the other expenses ?
Either you were ignorant of the facts, and should not have commented, or you purposely allowed the media to distort the facts for your own benefit.
Which was it,Dave ?

Chad Moats said...

Comment from my Blog:
Workplace absenteeism/illness is a growing problem nation-wide. This is primarily associated with the growing increase of mental health illness both in and out of the workplace and the Health systems' difficulty adjusting to this growing trend. If the CTF had taken the opportunity to survey employers accross Canada or even just accross Saskatchewan for that matter, they would note that every employer has had an increase in workplace absenteeism as a result of this rapidly and progressivley growing health trend. Benefits Canada (August 2005 issue) states that "the growing cost of corporate mental health is estimated at $33 billion dollars per year". Similar statistics have been reported by the UK (closer to $80 billion), US and Australia. This puts the miniscule $18 million that Sask Government employees are using in sick time into perspective. This is not an issue of public or private sector, this is an issue of Canadian health. It is unfortunate and irresponsible of the CTF and CTV to take a significant national health issue such as this and turn it into a political ploy to boost their affiliates' agendas. It is equally unfortunate that CTV (and the unfortunate John Gormley of CJME Talk Radio) has lost their purpose as journalists and become a forum for organizations to voice their unsubstantiated opinions without providing relative information for comparison (ie. private sector statistics on absenteeism).
Why did the CTF not take into account that SGEU government employees are alotted 15 sick days per year? If the CTF is claiming that the average sick days usage in a year is 10 days, then in fact the Sask Government employees are on average using less sick time than alotted to them.
As a Canadian Taxpayer, I request the CTF do their job in representing all taxpayers and providing fair statistics. Providing the raw data such as they did on CTV presents a perception that this is solely a Sask Government issue which is unjust and in my opinion somewhat fraudulent.
Also as a comment to David MacLean's statement posted here: "We did, however, talk about government absenteeism, which is a growing problem.". My questions is: What information was gathered to formulate this opinion and futhermore, is it actually only a growing problem in Sask government or a growing problem for everyone?
Someone only did half their homework!

David MacLean said...

I was told by members of the media Belanger's travel expenses for each of the past five years. Since I we are quite familiar with his expenses, it was not abnormal for us to comment on them.

If you don't like the fact that the CBC didn't cover the opposition's expenses, take it up with them.

I for one don't think this is worth our time. Absenteeism, however...

PA Grizzly said...

Guys don't waste yer time with moats, he is nothing but an NDP activist. Check his blog. He will never speak objecively abut issus. He will only defend his gov't.

Chad Moats said...

So what are your solutions to an international health issue, Dave ?

PA Grizzly your intelligent comments astound me, your so insightful. Put your name behind your comments and do a Google on me and see how much of an activist, I have been. But due to your encouragement, I have decided I will be.

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