Expenses

Politicians’ expenses have been much in the news in Nova Scotia. Wolfville, which considers itself a leader among municipalities in the province, can go to the forefront and be an example as we have on other issues like smoking, pesticides and uranium mining. Let’s be a leader in good governance.

How about putting the Mayor’s, Councillors’ and senior manager’s expenses on line. Ottawa has done it.

Ottawa taxpayers will be able to keep track of how much money their city councillors are spending, starting Monday.

The city will start posting councillor and senior manager expense reports on the Internet.

Mayor Jim Watson, who campaigned on what he called an ‘integrity platform’, says residents will be able to see how their money is being spent.

“We will be releasing for the first time ever councillors and senior management expenses online, so that you can see what we’re spending your money on,” said Watson.

The information will be separated into categories such as hospitality and travel, which will help taxpayers to understand how their money is being spent.

“[City officials] do have to spend money on hospitality or travel, that’s part of doing business,” the mayor said. “But it also disciplines us to make sure that we’re being respectful — day in and day out — with your money.”

Hear, hear we say. If you don’t have anything to hide you don’t need to hide it.

You can see what Ottawa has online re  expenses here.

Ottawa has an auditor and  a fraud and waste hotline. We notice they  are having a Spending Control Town Hall Meeting soon. They also have audio and video of meetings and don’t seem too concerned about people hearing them or quoting them. But perhaps they don’t have an Ow [Ottawa watch] to twist their words worry them.

A lot has been spent on IT in the past so many years in Wolfville. Isn’t it time that resident tax dollars for this benefited residents?

We don’t see why, for example, the Mayor’s words and expenses couldn’t go on line if he wasn’t embarrassed by them and he felt he could justify them.

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