… getting the ball rolling ?
Update (Nov 7 2013): Four of the seven members of Salmon Arm council have now forwarded their 2013 expenses to date. I have sent a follow-up email to Mayor Cooper and Councillors Cannon and Kentel asking once again if they are interested in doing the same.
Yesterday’s post Councillor Reimer Publicizes Itemized Expenses for 2013 was followed by an email invitation to the rest of Salmon Arm council wondering if they were interested in submitting their itemized expenses as well.
Now this is something that ideally should be done as a matter of due course using similar timelines, criteria, formatting etc. for reader-friendly consumption … right on the city’s website.
For now though, I’ll run with the initial positive feedback that I have received so far for voluntary transparency. Councillor Harrison has forwarded his expenses information for 2013 and hopefully more will be forthcoming.
I’m posting the submissions, in the order that they are received, starting with a re-posting of Councillor Reimer’s information from yesterday along with some brief comments if any were attached
Councillor Reimer: Please find attached a summary of my 2013 Elected Official Expenses to date.
Councillor Harrison: I think it is a good idea to have elected officials ensure expenses are easily accessible.
Ken Jamieson: This is information that can, and should be easily made available.
Chad Eliason: Here is my report
Mayor Cooper: 2013 expenses will not be complete until Dec 31, 2013. As soon as they are complete and compiled in January 2014 I will post the information on my blog and send you a link to it.
Councillor Kentel: … my expenses for 2013 … will be together by year end
Councillor Cannon: No response as of yet
As mentioned in yesterday’s post, I want to emphasize that this has nothing to do with any sense of impropriety. I simply like to to be able to see what is being expensed by our politicians whether they be federal, provincial or local.
A few years back, I requested that city council introduce legislation to publish candidates’ financial disclosures for Salmon Arm elections right on the city’s web site so that anyone could readily access that information rather than having to set up an appointment, traipse down to city hall and physically peruse a folder of submissions. That was the age-old way of doing things!
It was a simple and easily-implementable idea that council put in place for the 2011 municipal election.
A standardized quarterly (plus annual) expenses itemization is another initiative that the city could easily and inexpensively undertake to further foster transparency and accountability. The line item data is already there in the system.
Hopefully more submissions (and perhaps even a council initiative) to come!