Laliberte Not Likely to Detail Travel Spending

Tuesday, November 18, 2003 at 13:37



Churchill River MP Rick Laliberte says providing details on how he racked up over 310-thousand dollars in travel expenses in the last year is not a priority for him.


For the second year in a row, Laliberte had the highest travel tab of all Members of Parliament.


Laliberte says the 550-thousand dollars in travel expenses he’s racked up over the last two years is the result of representing a very large constituency with poor travel connections to Ottawa.


The Canadian Alliance candidate for Churchill River — Jeremy Harrison — isn’t buying that, and says Laliberte should open the books and show his constituents that each of his taxpayer-funded trips was legitimate.


Laliberte says he could make that request to whoever keeps track of that sort of thing on Parliament Hill, but says it’s a time-consuming process and providing justification to the Canadian Alliance is just not a priority right now.


Laliberte says his high travel bill should serve as a wake-up call to the government and transportation industry regarding the travel challenges facing remote regions.


Laliberte has been criticized for taking charter flights whenever he returns home from Ottawa, but says the alternative — driving 5 to 6 hours from Saskatoon to Beauval — would be too hard on his family life.