COMMISSIONER LOOKING INTO POSSIBLE CONFLICT BY MORNEAU

Federal ethics watchdog Mary Dawson is launching an examination of Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s involvement in a pension bill – that could have benefited a company in which he owned some $21 million worth of shares.

In a letter to NDP ethics critic Nathan Cullen, Dawson says she believes she has “reasonable grounds” to commence an examination of Morneau’s conduct.

The letter points to a section of the Conflict of Interest Act that empowers the ethics commissioner to examine a matter – if she has reason to believe a public office holder has contravened the act.

Cullen had asked Dawson to investigate whether Morneau was in a conflict of interest – when he sponsored Bill C-27.

Dawson had initially said she’d look into the matter and follow up with Morneau – she’s now upgraded that to a full-blown examination.

Bill C-27 would allow pension administrators to convert direct benefit pension plans – to targeted benefit plans – a change for which Morneau had lobbied when he was the head of Morneau Shepell, a pension administration and human resources company founded by his father.

Michael Kramer

About Michael Kramer

Michael is the afternoon news anchor on the New Classical 96.3FM and hosts the program Zero to 1800.