One of Winnipeg's candidates for mayor, former NDP MP Judy Wasylycia-Leis, is publicly disclosing her personal assets and liabilities to show voters she has no secrets.
Wasylycia-Leis is promising to restore public trust in city hall with more audits of city projects, better conflict-of-interest guidelines and whistleblower protection for city staff who are concerned about misconduct.
"People believe that there's been a misuse of public office. The rules of the game have not been open and transparent, that there is a perception of the use of public office for private and personal gain," she told reporters outside her home on Bannerman Avenue on Thursday.
Wasylycia-Leis said if elected, she will create an office to oversee accountability.
The city's auditor would receive additional resources to oversee a lobbyist registry, she said, adding that staff and councillors would be subject to a stricter code of ethics.
She also promised to post her calendar online, hold office hours on Saturdays and interact directly with citizens via social media services like Facebook and Twitter.
Recent controversies such as the fire hall land swap have resulted in people losing faith in city hall, she said.
"There is a perception of collusion and of nepotism between certain developers and city hall and the mayor's office," she said.
Wasylycia-Leis, a former NDP MP and MLA, released a list of personal assets and liabilities related to her and her husband, Ron. She pledged to donate her pension salaries to charity if she is elected.
|Cottage at Betula Lake||$275,000||-|
|Glastron Bowrider with 88 Johnson||$5,000||-|
|2007 Toyota Yaris||$6,000||-|
|2011 Toyota Rav4||$21,000||$20,000|
|U.S. savings (ACU)||$1,680|
|Line of credit (ACU)||$21,000|
|Judy's RRSP (mutual fund - IG)||$21,624|
|Ron's RRSP (IG)||$164,405|
|Ron's RRSP (ACU)||$12,308|
|Judy's MP pension (annual)||$68,785|
|Judy's MLA pension (annual)||$13,736|
(Source: Judy For Mayor campaign)
Bowman pledges to lift 'veil of secrecy'
Wasylycia-Leis was not the only mayoral candidate to call for accountability and transparency at city hall this week.
At an event on Tuesday, Brian Bowman said there is too much secrecy at city hall, and he wants citizens to be more engaged.
Bowman promised to make council votes, discretionary budgets and expenses more accessible to the public, as well as publish the schedule and calendar for the mayor's office.
He also said that if elected mayor, he will create an Office of Public Engagement that would act as a central system supporting city projects.
"It will ensure that there is consistency and transparency in sharing information with citizens on all projects, so that no project can slip through the cracks or fall off the radar until it is too late," he said in a news release.
A total of seven people are seeking the mayor's job in this fall's civic election. Voters will go to the polls Oct. 22.