December 27, 2006

Gotta love partisan politics

On Thursday, December 21, 2006, the last day before the Ontario Legislature's winter break, members of Provincial Parliament voted on two bills. I find the voting on these two bills disappointing and disturbing.

The first bill was Bill 178 - The Truth and Transparency in the Justice System Act.

This is a private member's bill introduced by John Tory. Its stated purpose is to provide more detailed reporting about the way in which various types of offences are handled by judges throughout Ontario.

The bill was shot down upon its second reading by a vote of 26 to 17. Although this seems close, my knowledge of the way things work in the Legislature is that the majority party was well aware of how many votes it would take to defeat the bill and only that many members voted. This view is supported by the voting on the second bill.

The second bill was Bill 173 - The Legislative Assembly Statute Law Amendment Act.

This sounds innocent enough until you realize that this is the bill that raises MPP's salaries by 25% and increases their pension from 5% to 10%, resulting in an effective salary increase of 31%.

I cannot say how disappointed I was that the Conservatives chose to vote for this increase.

The vote was 77 to 7 in favour of the bill. Only the NDP voted against it. Interesting how a lot more Liberal members showed up for this vote.

Thomas Walkom of the Toronto Star has some good comments about this bill.

In a following article, I will be providing a list of who voted on each bill, which way they voted, and to which political party they belong.

In the meantime, this information is available on the Ontario Legislature website. See for yourself how your MPP voted on these two bills.

Note the second-to-last sentence by the Speaker of the House: "This House stands adjourned until ... Monday, March 19, 2007."

That's three months away. Nice work, if you can get it.

To find out who the MPP is for your riding, click here.

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James said...

A good lobbying resource is this Ontario politicians contact list.

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