Trudeau needs to get Rideau Hall spending under control

Author: Franco Terrazzano 2022/06/14

OTTAWA, ON: The Canadian Taxpayers Federation is calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to get governor general expenses under control after reports show the Vice Regal spent $93,118 on in-flight catering. 

“Racking up a nearly six-figure tab on in-flight catering is a huge waste of money and shows contempt for taxpayers’ hard-earned money,” said Franco Terrazzano, Federal Director of the CTF. “Trudeau has repeatedly failed to clean up the waste at Rideau Hall.

“The government hasn’t done policy things right like ending expense accounts for former governors general and the government isn’t doing the day-to-day right like keeping a lid on extravagant catering bills.”

Governor General Mary Simon and her 29 passengers expensed $93,117.89 on in-flight catering services during her March 16 to 24 trip to Expo 2020 in Dubai. The in-flight expenses for the 30 passengers cost more than $3,100 per person.

Governors general receive other costly perks. For example, former governors general can expense taxpayers for of up to $206,040 each year for their rest of their lives and up to six months after their death. Trudeau ordered a review of the expense program in 2018. Despite the review’s completion in 2019, Trudeau has not ended the expense account for former governors general.  

Former governors general are also eligible for a full pension regardless of how long they serve in the role. Even though former governor general Julie Payette only served for a little more than three years, she will still receive an estimated $4.8 million if she continues to collect the governor general pension to age 90.

The governor general receives an annual salary of $308,972, according to the Parliament of Canada.

“Why hasn’t Trudeau put an end to the crazy perks and waste at Rideau Hall?” asked Terrazzano. “This huge waste of money shows it’s long past time for the government to stick up for taxpayers and end the office of the governor general’s frivolous spending.”