Outlook Negative

Posted by & filed under Canadian Government.

Description: It can’t be good news any time a bond-rating agency downgrades your outlook from “stable” to “negative.” But that is exactly what happened this past week as the Dominion Bond Rating Service (DBRS) provided its opinion on the current state of the Province of New Brunswick’s financial situation. With an aging population requiring health… Read more »

Searching for golden parachutes

Posted by & filed under Canadian Government.

Description: It has taken about eight years – including an attempt earlier this past summer – but New Brunswickers finally know that their provincially owned electrical utility paid roughly $1.7 million in severance to David Hay, the organization’s former CEO. In 2010 Hay abstained from a vote by the board of NB Power to sell… Read more »

Why not millennials?

Posted by & filed under Accounting Careers, Canadian Government.

Description: It’s a bit of a mystery. The average age of new permanent employees joining the public service is 37. That seems a bit long in the tooth, don’t you think? This is causing some to conclude that millenials are avoiding the public service of Canada. This does not bode well for the level of… Read more »

Costing election promises

Posted by & filed under Auditing, Canadian Government, Cost Accounting.

Description: Critics and citizens alike have long decried the lofty election promises politicians make during election campaigns. But now the Liberal government of the tiny Canadian province of New Brunswick appears to be trying to change this dynamic by proposing a law requiring political parties to cost their election platforms. Violators would be punished by… Read more »

A budget for science?

Posted by & filed under Canadian Government, Student life.

Description: This week’s federal budget had a number of interesting measures, and one that seems to be very strategic is the announcement of close to $118 million in funding for 25 research chairs in an effort to recruit “top-tier international scholars.” Following the U.S. election and the earlier Brexit vote in Britain, the promise of… Read more »

Hide that news

Posted by & filed under Canadian Government.

Description: This week the Globe and Mail reported that  the Minister of Finance did not include information on government expectations regarding future deficits in his November 1st financial updates. Instead, the information projecting decades of future deficits was released to the public somewhat quietly, two days before Christmas. While deficits are expected to continue for… Read more »

Ice storm disaster

Posted by & filed under Auditing, Canadian Government.

Description: This past Tuesday night a major ice storm knocked over 100,000 NB Power customers off the grid, and by weekend thousands of New Brunswickers were still without electricity. With colder winter weather settling in, after a few days near the zero mark, citizens are facing both darkness and cold. A number of communities have… Read more »

A rather expensive party

Posted by & filed under Advanced Accounting, Canadian Government.

Description: This year represents the 150th anniversary of confederation for Canada. And both the previous Conservative administration and the current Liberal government have been piling up the cash to help the celebration along. All told, $500 million has been budgeted to commemorate the anniversary in various forms. Meanwhile, the Department of Finance is predicting the… Read more »

Phoenix fallout

Posted by & filed under Canadian Government, Data security.

Description: It was supposed to be one of the centerpieces of the former Conservative government’s efforts to prove they were the ones to deliver savings and efficiency in the way the public sector delivered services. But now with weeks of stories on how employees have gone without pay cheques or been paid the wrong amount,… Read more »

Budget transparency?

Posted by & filed under Canadian Government, Ethics, Taxation.

Description: Last year, the Liberals under Justin Trudeau latched onto the transparency theme. But last week the Parliamentary Budget Office (PBO) criticized the Trudeau government for what we might call a lack of transparency. The PBO said the latest federal budget contains some unrealistic forecasts, in particular one which underestimates the level of private sector… Read more »