“Last week, when I first proposed a motion to cancel all international travel, including the conference to Boston, I was thinking of the thousands of Albertans who are losing their jobs during these tough economic times. We must set the right example and be extra-cautious with taxpayer dollars.
“Today, as discussed in the committee meeting, I called on the NDP government to immediately implement a policy to ban all international travel and all non-essential travel in Canada for all MLAs and bureaucrats. I’m also asking the government to ensure any essential travel within Canada by department staff is pre-approved by a Minister. There’s no question this is a unique and challenging time for the province, and we need to do everything we can to save taxpayer dollars.
“I’m disappointed that we had to have another meeting to do the right thing. However, I thank the NDP committee members for listening to us today and reversing both decisions – attending the ethics conference and raising legislative officers pay by 7.25 percent. While there is no doubt these officers do excellent work, such a pay increase is completely unjustified.”