New Brunswick

Greg Davis's $5K loan controversy prompts MLA expenses law

New Brunswick’s legislative assembly introduced a legislation Tuesday which aims to increase transparency.

Proposed law will create in a new reporting system for MLA expenses, constituency office expenses

New Brunswick's MLAs will be forced to adhere to new transparency rules on reporting their expenses and other costs from their constituency offices.

Natural Resources Minister Paul Robichaud, who is also the government house leader, introduced amendments to the Legislative Assembly Act regarding member expenses on Tuesday.   

"We committed to bringing even more accountability, transparency and consistency to the way expenses are reported," said Robichaud

"These amendments will help us build a stronger reporting system."

The announcement comes after the outstanding office constituency expenses of Campbellton-Restigouche Centre MLA Greg Davis remain unaccounted for months after the questionable expenses came to light.

The legislation will result in a new reporting system for MLA expenses and constituency office expenses. 

It ensures all expenses are reported more frequently and in a way that is more visible to the public.

MLA Davis’s questionable expenses came to light in March when office furniture in his Campbellton-Restigouche Centre constituency office was briefly seized by sheriff’s officers for non-payment of $6,665, representing six and a half months of rent from September 2013 to March 2014.

CBC learned that the Progressive Conservative party helped Davis pay an outstanding five-month rent bill at his constituency office in 2012.

Davis expensed $4,000 for four of those months and was reimbursed, but he still hasn't repaid the party in full.

A report into the office expenses of Davis showed  taxpayers did not pay anything extra for Davis’s rent problems this year — but also said the rookie MLA claimed some rent expenses in 2012, even after the PC Party of New Brunswick had already covered them.

Davis has not been in the Legislature this year, citing illness.