Green Party leader seeks information on legal costs in pensions case
Fredericton – On June 18th, David Coon, Leader of the Green Party of New Brunswick was refused a right to information request regarding the sum of money paid by the Office of the Attorney General to hire outside legal counsel in a court case concerning public pension plans. Coon has filed a complaint with the Integrity Commissioner.
“I filed this access to information request because New Brunwickers have a right to know how much the province is spending on lawyers in response to a legal case concerning changes made to public sector pensions brought forward by Guy Levesque from Moncton,” said Coon.
The Office of the Attorney General refused the request, citing that its functions and duties are exempt from access to information requests, that such a request would infringe on solicitor-client privilege, and that releasing the information would be injurious to its ongoing legal proceedings in this case.
“My request was simple and could have easily been answered without infringing on solicitor-client privilege or damaging the province’s legal proceedings,” said Coon. “The government secrecy around how it is spending public money has to end. I was denied financial information contained in corporate nursing home contracts; Brunswick News and CBC were denied financial details of the Ambulance New Brunswick contact; and now this.”