Minister's $40 movie questioned further
The Opposition had more questions Friday for P.E.I. Agriculture Minister George Webster over whether he charged his expense account $37.88 US for a hotel room movie.
Questions about the expense, incurred while Webster was at an agricultural conference in Texas in November 2011, first came up Thursday. Progressive Conservative MLA Colin Lavie asked Webster if he intended to repay it.
Webster said his staff went through his expenses Friday morning, and saw that as a personal expense.
"We reviewed it and I was only too glad to repay it, and I did," said Webster, and then he went on to explain he did not watch any movies during his stay in Texas.
"Maybe I came in and sat on the remote, I don't know, doing book work," he said.
"I did not watch a movie. I don't watch movies. I very rarely go to a movie on Prince Edward Island, Madame Speaker. So if that happened, the charge is on your room, what can you do about it? The only thing I could do about it was pay it personally."
The opposition then moved on to new questions about cabinet minister expenses.
James Aylward asked Community Services and Seniors Minister Valerie Docherty why she spent $16 for a hotel room upgrade while attending a conference in Toronto.
Docherty responded her room wasn't ready when she arrived and she had to get ready for an important meeting. She said she was offered an upgraded room that was available immediately, and took it.
Aylward suggested she took the upgrade so she could get on a higher floor with a better view. Docherty said she didn't know if the room was bigger or had a better view, because she never saw room she had originally booked.
She said she could have freshened up and changed in a public washroom in the hotel, but felt $16 was worth the price of arriving on time and looking professional, to represent the province's seniors at a national meeting.