I had written my MP Report for today, and then we had some breaking news.
We learned that Prime Minister Trudeau has been found guilty on four violations of the Conflict of Interest Act in a report released by Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner, Mary Dawson.
The various conflict violations are related to a vacation that the Trudeau family and friends took on a private island owned by the Aga Khan in December of 2016.
Ultimately this relates to the fact that the Aga Khan Foundation is a registered lobbyist that receives millions of dollars in funding each year from the Federal Government. The Conflict of Interest Act is intended to ensure that elected officials do not personally benefit from their position of public office.
With the Prime Minister and also the Finance Minister recently being found in violation of the Conflict of Interest Act, I am often asked, what is the penalty?
Currently the penalty for being found in violation of the Conflict of Interest Act is a fine that has a maximum of up to $500.
My question for this week- do you believe that the fine for a violation of the Conflict of Interest Act is sufficient at $500 or should it be higher or something else, other than money?
Now on to my original report.
I would like to take a moment to thank the residents of Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola.
We share a large, diverse and beautiful region together; the one constant is the friendliness of the people and the level of interaction and engagement, that from my perspective, is very high.
It is truly an honour to represent you and raise your issues of importance in Ottawa.
Recently, I was able to bring forward the challenges single parents, most often mothers, were having in dealing with the Canadian Revenue Agency in obtaining Canada Child Benefits. I asked the Minister of National Revenue about this in Question Period and have since been interviewed by CBC. This has now become a national story with wide reaching implications.
I credited the Minister’s office recently for resolving some of these issues, which will ensure some households will have a far more meaningful holiday season.
When an issue can be raised by Opposition and the Government can respond in a positive manner, it is an example that our democracy is working and for that we shall all be thankful.
On that note, I would like to sincerely wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a safe and enjoyable holiday season.
Best wishes for a prosperous 2018 and a special thank you to our armed forces and first responders for the ongoing work that they do on our behalf.
I can be reached at Dan.Albas@parl.gc.ca or call toll free at 1-800-665-8711.
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Dan Albas is the Member of Parliament for the riding of Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola.