COMMENTARY · 22nd February 2010
Dear Editor... I am still perplexed as to why our Mayor; Mr. Pernarowoski and Mr. Downie would accept honarariums and expenses from Enbridge. To use the " should the taxpayer have to pay for the cost of attending these meetings?" as his justification for accepting these monies is very poor rationale. I do not support the pipeline proposal, but I feel that If our elected officials need to attend a clearly important issue, then they must go. and we must support their efforts financially. I feel that accepting these monies at the very least creates an appearance of a conflict of interest.
Comment by Carrie La Porte on 24th February 2010
Well now that I have read both sides of the argument I am puzzled. Why on earth would it cost $200 per person to cover costs from Terrace to Kitimat? The drive itself is about an hour and a half round trip, two hours in bad weather, and over a paved road, so there is little wear and tear on the vehicles, and fuel costs are not that high, unless they chartered a plane. As well, since they were going to the same meeting, it would have made both financial and ecological sense to car pool. Since it is a relatively short commute, there was no need for accomodation rental. And unless they had a champagne supper then food costs would not even begin to consume the large balance left after paying for gas. It would have been better to have kept meal and fuel receipts and received reimbersement for those expenses, solely. Correct me if I am wrong, but I believe our elected officials are already otherwise compensated, or am I missing something here? One would imagine that some flexibility must be possible regarding their work-day hours. It is also most regrettable that there was a willingness to drive to Kitimat but not to a meeting walking distance away. This begs the question of whether it was information that was sought, or perks. Our officials seem like men of integrity but one must be ultra-scrupulous when occupying a public position.