If you have a vivid imagination, you could perhaps understand how certain MLAs rationalized that some of their expenses cited in the Auditor General's report were used for government business.
Perhaps the model ship purchased by one MLA is on display in his constituency office. Perhaps the generator purchased by another MLA will be used in the event of an emergency in his community. Perhaps the internet service purchased by a third MLA is used to check emails from his home.
But under no test of "reasonableness" can you imagine that other expenses are justified.
How could one MLA (Leonard Preyra) think that purchasing an airline ticket to Ottawa for his son was justified? How could another MLA (name unknown) think that purchasing 11 computers in three years was justified? How could a third MLA (premier Darrell Dexter) think that claiming twice for the same meals was justified?
On the eve of what is likely to be an austerity budget with tax increases and major spending cuts, I call upon all MLAs to come clean and, on your respective websites, reveal everything you have spent our tax dollars on under each of the allowances including constituency office allowance, travel allowance and technology allowance.
Only by being fully transparent and disclosing this information will you be able to start rebuilding taxpayers' confidence that you are spending our money wisely.
—Gerry Walsh, former candidate (Halifax Citadel), Sable Island