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CBC Ottawa

City councillors pay it forward

So no big scandals in the detailed office expenses posted on the City's web site this week. Councillors have had it drilled into them by the clerk's office: Charge sunglasses and underpants to your office budgets at your peril. So far they seem to be listening.

What the expense reports do reveal is how big-hearted some city councillors can be. West Carleton-March councillor Eli El-Chantiry donated $2,035, or nearly one per cent of his annual office budget, to purchase an aluminum sign for the Fitzroy Harbor fire station. Apparently there wasn't enough money left in the construction budget to get the firefighters a sign, so El-Chantiry bought one for them.

There are smaller donations too. Orleans councillor Bob Monette gave $250 to the Club Citadel condo board for interest accrued on their water bill. Monette says the City had been billing the wrong address, but was unwilling to own up to the mistake. Then there's Osgoode councillor Doug Thompson. He contributed $100 to help send a young constituent, Kristina Alexander, to Carnegie Hall in New York City. Alexander is working on her Master's in voice performance at the University of Ottawa. She performed Berlioz's Requiem on the famous stage under the direction of renowned conductor Robert Spano.

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