Green party leader wants people to be able to participate in the work of the People’s House

Fredericton – David Coon, Leader of the Green Party of New Brunswick and MLA for Fredericton South, is urging the government to support his motions to give the Committees of the Legislature greater authority and autonomy.

“Our legislative committees currently lack the necessary authority to fulfill the mandates the Legislative Assembly gave them years ago. Whether it is examining the spending of public money by government departments, reviewing proposed legislation, or ensuring the recommendations of Legislative Officers such as the Child, Youth and Seniors Advocate, our committees are hamstrung,” said Coon.

Today, Coon tabled two motions. First, he wants members of the Legislature to give committees the authority to call for persons, papers and documents.

“Just like most other parliaments in Canada, our legislative committees should have the ability to hear testimony from the public, representatives of groups, experts or public official to help us in our work to make laws, develop policy proposals, and recommend improvements to expenditure of public moneys by government departments,” said Coon.

Secondly, he tabled a motion that would mandate Legislative Officers, other than the Auditor General, to present their annual reports, and special reports containing recommendations, to the Standing Committee on Procedures, Privileges and Legislative Officers.

“The Standing Committee on Public Accounts is responsible for following up on the implementation of the recommendations made by the Auditor General, but at the moment, recommendations made by other Legislative Officers, such as the Child, Youth and Seniors Advocate, go nowhere. I believe the Standing Committee Responsible for Legislative Officers should be mandated to receive and follow-up on the reports and recommendations of all the other legislative officers,” said Coon.

“It is my hope that these motions receive the support of government and that we see them passed by the Legislature this session,” said Coon.