Manitoba government's adviser on climate strategy racked up $60K in travel: NDP
Premier Brian Pallister says McLaughlin is a recognized expert on climate-change strategies. (File image)
Steve Lambert, The Canadian Press
Published Thursday, October 12, 2017 4:58PM CST
Manitoba's Opposition New Democrats are accusing the Tory government of spending a large amount of money on travel for one of its top advisers.
The New Democrats say documents obtained under the province's freedom-of-information law show roughly $60,000 has been spent this year on trips by David McLaughlin, the government's adviser on climate strategy.
The vast majority of the trips have been between Winnipeg and Ottawa, and NDP legislature member Andrew Swan says it's not clear what Manitoba has gained from all the travel.
Swan says the travel expenses -- which include hotels, airfare, food and more -- are on top of McLaughlin's six-figure salary.
Premier Brian Pallister says McLaughlin is a recognized expert on climate-change strategies and has helped the province prepare its response to the federal government's plan for a carbon tax.
Pallister also says the spending pales in comparison to almost $700,000 spent by the former NDP government on severance payments for senior staff who were fired or quit during an internal revolt against then-premier Greg Selinger in 2015.