The PBO and your right to know

Paul McLeod tries to wrap his head around the dispute between the Harper government and the Parliamentary Budget Officer.

Taxpayer-funded lawyers are about to take on taxpayer-funded lawyers to keep tax spending secret from taxpayers. If this already sounds silly, it just gets worse. Parliamentary budget officer Kevin Page has asked for details of budget cuts. He’s given today as a final deadline before he calls in the lawyers. The government has refused to comply and is readying its own legal guns.

By the end of the day, Page will have to pinch himself and decide whether to launch a court battle over something as inane and obvious as Parliament’s right to know how tax dollars are being spent. Unfortunately, it looks like he has no choice.

The departments of Public Works and Public Safety and CSIS contacted the PBO today and the PBO has granted each of them extensions past today’s deadline for information: see here, here and here.

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