It’s been, thank God, a slow news week: no murders, no elections, no trains. I thought, therefore, that I’d peer into the sausage factory to see what the pols have been doing with your tax dollars.
Alan Tonks has has a busy seven days. Last Thursday he spoke about the acquisition of F-35 fighter jets, saying that we need a foreign policy review to see what we might actually do with them. On Friday he gave quite a long speech on a point of order about a bill to reintroduce the long form census.
Tonks has also been busy voting: on Tuesday he voted to cancel the F-35 fighter acquisition and hold an open tender (the bill was defeated). On Wednesday he voted on two somewhat mundane topics:
- To have a look at the water system reports of a contaminated Canadian Forces base in Valcartier Quebec
- To change the language of a bill regarding affordable housing
This week Tonks also sat through two meetings of the Standing Committee on Natural Resources, of which he is the Vice Chair. It met on both Tuesday and Thursday and considered nuclear isotopes and energy security.
Laura Albanese spoke to the house today about the importance of winter tires and related a story about her own car crash. She was speaking to a bill that would implore (but not require) insurance companies to lower insurance rates for cars with snow tires. She also spoke briefly in favour of a bill that would create a database of prescription painkiller users. This week she voted:
- For a bill to reduce water use and improve water infrastructure
- For a bill to give energy bill tax credits to low-income households.
Frances Nunziata has been on tenterhooks. City Hall is all but shut down as David Miller packs up and Rob Ford picks drapes. Nunziata is expecting, according to the papers, to be nominated Speaker of City Council as a quid pro quo for supporting Ford in the mayoral election. The Speaker chairs council meetings, and must be voted in by the rest of council.