Turbulent Wouters

Incoming PCO Clerk, Wayne Wouters, under pressure over slow rollout of stimulus cash

Here’s a shovel, there’s the pile of cash—now get to work. According to the Hill Times, that’s pretty much what the first day on the job was like for the newly appointed Clerk of the Privy Council, who started his new gig last week and is already facing “pressure” to move more than $35 billion in stimulus money “out the door quickly”—all the while following the Federal Accountability Act in both letter and spirit. Which may be easier said than done, according to University of Ottawa professor Errol Mendes, who served in the PCO in 2005-2006, giving him an inside view of the FAA’s beginnings. “That shows how the road to hell is paved with good intentions,” he tells the Hill Times. “Where you had John Baird being a ‘rah, rah minister’ for the Federal Accountability Act, but now realizing that it’s standing in his way of pumping out the stimulus package.” There’s also much speculation about more shuffling of deputy ministers; not only does Wouters’ former post at Treasury Board have to be filled, but there are rumours that other deputies may be leaving government as well.

The Hill Times

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