Update from Inside the Rail.

Today concludes another productive week in the Legislative Assembly.

Our PC team continues to bring forward many issues on behalf of Islanders through question period, our own private member bills, and debating government's legislation.

This week Wade MacLauchlan has finally brought two complex and long-promised pieces of legislation to the floor; one on whistle-blowers, and the other on lobbyists.

Both proposed bills fall short of promised protection for Island taxpayers and civil servants.

Following a similar theme to the Water Act, there are significant gaps in these bills and they provide far too much power to Cabinet and the government of the day. In the case of the Whistleblower bill, Members of Cabinet are the only ones with the power to appoint or remove the Whistleblower Commissioner (who is actually suppose to be an independent Officer of the Legislative Assembly). Wade MacLauchlan is simply turning his existing policy, which many have stated does not offer enough protection, into legislation, rather than fixing the problem.

With the Lobbyist Bill, Wade MacLauchlan is giving Cabinet the power to exempt people or groups of people from the lobbyist rules at their choosing. Cabinet is also given the power to decide whether a lobbyist is doing enough lobbying to be consider a lobbyist, and whether the legislation has to apply to them.

Give me a break...

My colleagues and I have real concerns with these flawed bills, and you should too. We have examined these bills and prepared amendments to address our concerns and eliminate the gaps. Our debate with the government around these bills has led to Liberal Ministers raising their own questions and concerns.

I am proud of the hard work being done by our PC team in holding the MacLauchlan government to account.

Believe in Better, 

James Aylward
Leader, Official Opposition & PC Party of PEI