She must have attended the instructional class of the Bev Oda school of spending.
I'd love to see ALL the departments gone over with a fine tooth comb.
MPs grill port CEO over spending
Claude Benoit unapologetic
By Jessica Murphy ,Parliamentary Bureau
First posted: Thursday, May 10, 2012 05:54 PM EDT | Updated: Thursday, May 10, 2012 06:09 PM EDT
OTTAWA - An unapologetic Claude Benoit defended an "inspirational" trip Down Under, ski resort work retreats and Duck confit lunches as legitimate business expenses to MPs probing spending at the Crown corporation she oversees.
Benoit was hauled before the Commons ethics committee Thursday after a QMI Agency investigation unveiled high-roller spending at the agency that runs the Montreal Old Port.
The indignant CEO said her agency was the victim of a media smear job and she was glad to have the chance to clear her name.
Benoit added she welcomed the subsequent increased scrutiny from the auditor general, who is currently going through their books.
MPs had pointed questions for Benoit over a Christmastime trip in 2008-09 to Australia and New Zealand she took with a friend, and charged taxpayers $10,100 after claiming 10 days of the 29-day excursion were work related.
Benoit spent time checking waterfront sites, taking a spin on a cruise ship, a ride on a Ferris wheel she considered buying with tax dollars and popping into a Star Wars exhibit she eventually brought to the city's Old Port.
"It's essential for both me and my colleagues to draw inspiration, to establish connections, to establish networks," she said.
Benoit met with no officials during her stay, but noted the former board chairman signed off in advance of the trip and she filed seven reports on her return.
Gerry Weiner - named the corporation's chairman of the board in 2009 - also supported Benoit's expedition, claiming "to be among the best, you must travel."
But he admitted they'd subsequently tightened travel rules and would be unlikely to green light a similar trip - taken during the height of the past recession - given the current global financial crisis.
Other spending included $55,487 on work retreats at a luxurious ski report and $7,100 for trips to Sweden and Florida.
http://www.torontosun.com/2012/05/10/mp ... r-spending