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Pallister's Tax Dollar Spending Spree

November 8, 2018

MEDIA RELEASE
 
Pallister’s Tax Dollar Spending Spree
Funding for Consultants, Lawyers, Accountants – but not Manitoba communities
 
Winnipeg, MB – Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister has opted for a spending spree on the taxpayer’s dime. The Winnipeg Free Press reports that over the past two years, Pallister’s government has hired external consultants costing more than $16 million. This is eight times the amount paid under the Turning the Page Agreement between the Province, Manitoba Hydro and the Manitoba Metis Federation in that period. Pallister’s government unilaterally canceled Turning the Page last week.

 

“Pallister has managed to find millions of dollars for high-priced consultants, lawyers from Alberta, and accountants from across the country,” noted Manitoba Metis Federation President David Chartrand. “Yet he cancels funding that directly supported Manitoba’s economy and the hardworking taxpayers of the Manitoba Métis Community. The Turning the Page Agreement was reconciliation in action. Now we are in a situation where Pallister has left the province and Hydro with no clear process or principles for fulfilling their duty to consult, accommodate or compensate the Manitoba Métis Community for projects affecting our constitutionally-protected rights. This creates a massive liability that will only add to the expensive bill Pallister is making taxpayers cover.”

 

The Turning the Page Agreement was signed in 2014 by the Province, Manitoba Hydro and the Manitoba Metis Federation. The Agreement set out principles and processes for consultation with the Métis, for mitigating and offsetting impacts on Métis rights, and for accommodating Métis concerns. It also set out the Manitoba Metis Federation’s commitment to engage and represent the Manitoba Métis Community throughout these processes. Only 25% of the funding ($5 million) under the terms of Turning the Page has been transferred to date. The Manitoba Metis Federation has invested these resources in programs for Veterans, Elders and Youth to benefit thousands of Manitobans across the province.  These investments supported community-building and cultural preservation for Métis whose traditional ways of life were harmed by Manitoba Hydro development. Pallister’s cancelation of this agreement turns back the page on reconciliation in Manitoba. It is clear that Pallister would rather spend tax dollars on consultants and lawyers than invest in reconciliation for all Manitobans.
 
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Believe in Yourself; Believe in Métis.
 
The Manitoba Metis Federation (MMF) is the official democratic and self-governing political representative for the Métis Nation’s Manitoba Métis Community. The Manitoba Métis are Canada’s Negotiating Partner in Confederation and the Founders of the Province of Manitoba.

 
For media information, please contact:
Kristiana Clemens
Communications Specialist
Manitoba Metis Federation
Phone: 204-586-8474 x324
Cell: 204-451-0604
E-mail: kristiana.clemens@mmf.mb.ca

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