Friday, November 21, 2008

How did we almost miss this?

The above article appeared in Thursday's Globe and Mail. I've reproduced the text below:

"The new Minister of Canadian Heritage is warning CBC executives to rein in their expenses after reports of heavy spending on theatre tickets, meals and travel.

James Moore has written to the public broadcaster in response to a news story detailing lavish spending by Sylvain Lafrance, executive vice-president for French services.

"I am sure that you are sensitive to the fact that, at a time of fiscal restraint when Canadians are struggling to maintain their jobs and savings, this sort of reported excess does not sit well with them," Mr. Moore wrote in a letter released yesterday to the media.

Reports this week detailed how Mr. Lafrance signed off on almost $80,000 in 2006, including $28,000 on hotels, travel and meals."

I find this interesting not in the spirit of schadenfreude, but for another reason. I conclude from this report - perhaps overly optimistically - that the new Minister of Canadian Heritage, Mr. James Moore, is willing to exercise his duty to oversee the CBC and is willing to remind the CBC executives that, as a Crown Corporation, they are ultimately responsible to the Minister.

Bravo, Mr. Moore! Now, if only the CBC executives could also be reminded that they are also responsible to the shareholders of the CBC, the taxpayers of Canada, namely, you and me.

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