Liberal Government’s Secrecy Harms the Public

May 31, 2016

QUEEN’S PARK – Ontario’s Financial Accountability Officer (FAO) highlighted how the current Government’s “broader pattern” of secrecy and frequent refusal to provide information is “impeding the ability of MPPs to perform their constitutional duties”.

 

“The Liberal Government has established a reputation for obstruction and resistance to any transparency measure” MPP McDonell stated. “The Financial Accountability Officer confirms what the PC Caucus has been saying all along – the Government’s refusal to be open and transparent deprives the public, experts and MPPs of the facts and of the ability to hold the Government to account. To date, this Government has a dismal record. Failure to meet financial disclosure requirements, obstruction of the gas plants investigation, deleted e-mails, shielding Hydro One from all oversight and the disappearance of important wind energy contract documents combine to paint a picture of a Government desperately trying to keep a lid on a growing mountain of evidence of their mismanagement.”

 

Recently, the Government’s failure to locate records related to a Trillium Energy wind project sought under a Freedom of Information request triggered a police investigation. Public knowledge of the Government’s climate change plan was made possible by a leak to the Globe and Mail.

 

“It appears leaks and criminal investigations are the only ways to extract true information from this Government” MPP McDonell stated. “A government that denies us the ability to verify their information and claims erodes their own credibility. Hiding and denying the Government’s problems doesn’t make them go away. Instead, it allows issues to fester and grow into scandals. This can’t be allowed to continue. MPPs, the public and independent officers of the Legislature must be allowed to do their job by receiving that information which the law already entitles them to, and that is being denied to them by Premier Wynne and her Government.”