Canadian minister raps CBC on expenses

Nov. 21, 2008 at 12:57 PM
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TORONTO, Nov. 21 (UPI) -- The chairman of the board of the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. has been reprimanded by a federal minister over broadcast executives' expenses.

Earlier this week, Sun Media reported Sylvain Lafrance, executive vice president for French services at the publicly funded CBC, filed expenses of some $80,000 for such things as theater tickets, hotel rooms, travel to France and in-office catering.

In light of the report, Heritage Minister James Moore wrote the chairman of the CBC, Timothy Casgrain, calling for a reining-in of expenses, the news agency said.

"I am sure that you are sensitive to the fact that, at a time of fiscal restraint when Canadians are struggling to maintain their jobs and savings, this sort of reported excess does not sit well with them," Moore wrote.

CBC officials have said the $80,000 expenses found under a freedom of information request was "fully compliant with CBC corporate policy."

As for Moore's letter to Casgrain, an unidentified CBC spokesman said the chairman would "deal directly with the minister ... in due course," the report said.

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