Keeping a prime minister


Amy Minsky tallies the Privy Council Office.

In the mid-1990s, under Liberal prime minister Jean Chretien, there was the equivalent of 662 people employed on a full-time basis in the Privy Council Office, the bureaucracy that supports and advises the prime minister and his cabinet. By 2010-11, that number swelled to 1,066, according to the office’s annual performance reports. During the same time, costs of running the office increased to $160 million from $79.7 million. 


Keeping a prime minister

  1. Amy Minsky ~  Global News:

    The growth in this one federal office, however, mirrors the overall trend in Harper’s Ottawa, where the federal public service swelled by more than 33,020 people, or 13 per cent, in his first five years at the helm. 

    Frontier Centre For Public Policy: 

    A recent analysis by the C.D. Howe Institute shows the total wage bill for federal civilian employment grew at an annual rate of almost seven percent between fiscal years 1999/2000 and 2009/2010. In dollar terms, the wage bill increased by 90 percent, from $12.8 billion to $24.4 billion, while the economy grew by only a little more than 55 percent during the same decade.

    This trend has two causes. The first is a significant increase in the number of public servants. The federal government’s civilian workforce grew by 35 percent between 1999 and 2009, while the Canadian population increased by only 11 percent. Jobs in the for-profit sector of the economy increased by 14 percent during this time period.

    Vancouver Sun ~ Dec 2011:

    In a recent series of columns for The Vancouver Sun (Dec. 14-17), five University of B.C. economists provided valuable insights into the contours and causes of growing income inequality in Canada. 

    Library Of Economics:
    “Gary Becker …. also presented evidence that discrimination is more pervasive in more-regulated, and therefore less-competitive, industries. The idea that discrimination is costly to the discriminator is common sense among economists today, and that is due to Becker.”

  2. Well, I could understand the increased staffing if Harper really did plan on learning how to play hockey. (quite a let down that)

    Of course, Emily will probably show up and explain that Canadians really don’t like hockey.  

    • LOL some Canadians like hockey, but far more Canadians go to museums, art galleries, concerts and movies than hockey games.

      Don’t be taken in by the image being projected by the PMO.

  3. A Sun King needs a Versailles.

    We don’t go in for gilt chairs that much these days, just gilt communications….but the directives remain the same. Divine right.

  4. Hey! It’s his money! Let him spend it as he likes.

  5. It’s all your fault Aaron. If you’d only start writing “nice”things about the PM he could probably lay half those flunkies off. Come on he’s just a nice guy – he’s probably dying to up the macleans subsidy.

  6. Read closer, Aaron:  when Harper came to power there were actually 1030 people in Paul Martin’s  PCO, today there are…1066, a stunning increase of nearly 3% over 5 years.

    What a stupid article.

    • Aaron would never let facts get in the way of a smug, anti-CPC post.  He is a consummate LPC hack, after all.

    • The ‘they did it, too!’ defense. Why does the PCO need over 1k staff?