May 15th, 2014

Why the Board of Internal Economy needs to be cleaned up

The NDP has maintained that the Board of Internal Economy has too often become a partisan body used as a secret, behind closed doors kangaroo court, with no due process and nothing to stop parties from changing rules and interpretations to fit their partisan interests.

Last June, the NDP proposed eliminating the secretive Board of Internal Economy and replacing it with an arm’s length body, free of political interference. Liberals and Conservatives first supported this change – then killed it when the public’s attention was diverted.

As the NDP said in its minority report to the Procedure and House Affairs Committee:

“The NDP stands firmly with the Auditor General in believing that an independent oversight body to replace the [Board of Internal Economy’s] role as regards MP expenses is a needed part of the efforts to bring transparency to MP expense reporting. Canadians will have greater confidence in the accuracy of expense rules and approvals if the responsible body is independent of MPs, rather than being like the BOIE where MPs are required to police themselves. An independent oversight body would be accountable to the Canadian public whereas the BOIE is accountable only to Members of Parliament.”

Canadians deserve better.

Canadians deserve to have their elected parliamentarians focused on them, not just on meeting Ottawa lobbyists – or on Kangaroo court attacks.