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Sometimes good ideas survive in Ottawa


 

It was interesting to read about Kevin Page, the new Parliamentary Budget Officer, because in a previous existence — actually near the dawn of this existence, in 2004 — I called for the creation of an office much like the one Page now runs. It was also good to see MPs recognize that, when Page’s figures disagree with a government’s, it will create uncomfortable moments for the government. As far as I can tell, that’s the whole point of having an independent budget authority.

Back when I was blue-skying the idea of a Canadian budget office, I hoped it would be intergovernmental, able to comment, from one place, on the budget projections of the federal government and all the provinces and territories. That was terribly optimistic of course. Still, it’s extraordinary that Page and his office even exist, and from what I’ve heard he is ambitious enough to empire-build and mission-creep, which means he will certainly be making news.


 

Sometimes good ideas survive in Ottawa

  1. The whole idea of creating an independent budget authority is to promote fiscal transparency. Given the lack of competence and objecitvity of the bureaucrats in department of Finance and Treasury Board Secretariat, Kevin Page brings a unique and authoritative perspective. He can provide independent advice to parliamentarians on large expenditure proposals. Parliamentarians and Canadians are the winners, but the office is under resourced. It’s a joke!

  2. CANADA NEEDS AN INDEPENDENT BUDGET OFFICER. MR. PAGE IS AN EXCELLENT CHOICE WITH 15 BUDGETS UNDER HIS BELT. HARPER SHOULD BE CONGRATULATED ON HIS CHOICE OF PAGE. KEVIN IS A FEARLESS AND HONEST PROFESSIONAL BUREAUCRAT.

  3. It’s amazing how a small but an excellent team of professionals headed by a leader with integrity can do to help parliamentarians hold the government to account. The current economic climate coupled with tight money conditions, require an honest and professional leader like Kevin Page. Honest parliamentarians should be strengthening the hands of Mr. Page.

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