Thursday, November 05, 2009

Lisa Raitt steps in it again?

Boy that's a common blog post title around here these days: "Raitt accused of expense abuse." Well that's a whole new ball of ethical wax, isn't it?
Federal cabinet minister Lisa Raitt signed off on her own expenses on at least one occasion – more than $3,000 spent on a trip to London, England – when she was president and CEO of the Toronto Port Authority.

Raitt signed on the line reserved for the board chair on the February 2008 claim, according to correspondence with the agency's auditor, Deloitte & Touche LLP, obtained by the Star.
Documents also show nobody signed off on $50,000 spent at Harbour Sixty Steakhouse in the port authority building, including a $9,000 lunch for about 50 people, and another for $1,000 at a Sept. 11 "internal management lunch."

Other expense claims appear to bear Raitt's signature, and two unsigned claims for February 2008 have notes attached: "Chair refused to sign. No reason given."
Lots of questions there about the use of the publicly owned Toronto Port Authority's resources during Raitt's time as CEO which immediately preceded her run for the Conservatives in 2008. The relationship between the two is what is of interest here.