Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Sask: NDP, Sask Party suddenly want more scrutiny of caucus funds

What an amazing turn of events!

Both the NDP and Saskatchewan Party say they will consider enhanced oversight and more public transparency over the government funding provided to MLA caucuses.

The issue has taken on new life in the wake of a 15-year-old case of employee fraud within the NDP caucus that has only recently come to light.

NDP MLA Kevin Yates, a member of the legislature's board of internal economy, said the government would be supportive of changes that would see the provincial auditor audit caucus funds.

As well, the government "would have no difficulty" with caucuses being brought in line with the disclosure rules for government departments, which must make public their payments to employees and suppliers that exceed $50,000.

"If it's time now to take the next step and have those audits be more in line with what government departments do, that's good public policy and we're prepared to go there," Yates told reporters Monday.

"If it's time now..."? "If"?

The time came 15 years ago when Progressive Conservative MLAs were doing perp walks. This is why politicians are marginally less popular than lawyers and used car salesmen.

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