Oct 12, 2016

By Jane Brown

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Canada’s Members of Parliament, from all parties, have run up a $71-million bill in the first six months of this year on expenses including the running of their constituency offices.

The total also includes travel and living expenses, promoting their activities with advertising and buying meals and gifts for others.

Interim Conservative Leader Rona Ambrose led the way, spending just under $320,000 from January 1st to June 30th. Independent MP Hunter Tootoo spent the least at $124,000.

A published analysis also found two Liberal MPs spent $40,000 on smartphones, laptops and other technological gear. An Alberta Conservative MP spent $65,000 on repairs and maintenance of a riding office. And a St. John’s Liberal MP spent $50,000 in just six months on the lease of his constituency office, while in Prince George B.C., a Conservative MP spent all of $8 on the same expense.

Information on how MPs spend money has only bee made public since the 2014-15 fiscal year. It’s published online by the Library of Parliament, but in a way that makes it difficult to compare spending among groups of MPs or across any one of 24 different categories.

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