Tories trigger debate on $800,000 for minister’s office renos

An hours-long parliamentary debate will require Liberal MPs to stand up and defend the spending

OTTAWA – The Conservatives are hoping to embarrass the Liberal government tonight by forcing them to spend hours debating pricey office renovations.

The official Opposition had a field day last month when they discovered the government had spent more than $800,000 renovating the offices of Infrastructure Minister Amarjeet Sohi.

Tonight, the Conservatives plan to use parliamentary procedure to officially oppose that line item in the government’s estimates, triggering an hours-long debate that will require Liberal MPs to stand up and defend it.

Sohi has said the expense was necessary because he had to set up an entirely new department, including space for political staff, a deputy minister and public servants.

Under the previous government, the infrastructure portfolio was part of the transport ministry.

Sohi’s spokeswoman Kate Monfette said the minister will be in the House of Commons tonight to defend the spending.

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