Sisterly love

Earlier, Times Colonist columnist Les Leyne reported rumours failed provincial Liberal candidate Virginia Greene would be appointed deputy minister responsible for tourism, sports and the arts. And, via Broadcast News legislative correspondent Scott Sutherland, we hear the premier's office has now confirmed those rumours, quietly releasing an information bulletin earlier today announcing that appointment. Of course, this announcement is not much of a surprise to the Rockpile's liberally-wagging tongues. After all, Ms. Greene - a former senior bureaucrat - became buddies with her future minister Olga Ilich during the election campaign. And, along with now Finance Minister Carole Taylor, they became known as the three sisters. So now that Ms. Greene has gotten her patronage position with the provincial government, the question becomes who's next?

Former Victoria-Beacon Hill MLA Jeff Bray already got his taxpayer lollipop last month when he was named the Liberal's caucus executive director. And many think ex-House Leader Graham Bruce could be in-line for a government contract. But those thinkers aren't looking at the Members' Conflict of Interest Act, which clearly states government must not "award or approve a contract with, or grant a benefit to, a former member of the Executive Council or former parliamentary secretary, until 24 months have expired after the date when the former member of the Executive Council or former parliamentary secretary ceased to hold office." So let's wait two years and see what happens shall we?


I know it's common for journalists to sneeringly talk of patronage appointments. And, yes, the appointment of people from DMs to MAs -- individuals expected to be loyal to the government's agenda -- qualify as patronage. But, IMHO, the real public focus should be on whether these folks merit their positions. While I'm glad Gregor Robertson defeated her -- as I think it best, over the long term, for people like Robertson to exert influence in the NDP -- there can be little doubt that Virginia Greene has the qualifications to provide leadership at the DM level in the tourism ministry. Similarly, Jeff Bray, whom I voted against in Victoria Beacon Hill, is a reasonable choice for the loyalist role in which he's been appointed.

I'm not against the snearing, where it's merited. Just finished the Sean paeon in the Tyee, the guy who'd rather research that pump out daily copy ...
but not so adverse to shooting from the lip, it seems

Did this "patronage" appointment go to Virginia Greene, the former ADM of Tourism, who was promoted up the ranks in the public service and was a critical marketer of Expo '86?

Was the Liberal caucus supposed to put an ad in the paper and accept all comers and give them an equal shake at the top political/administrative "lollipop" in their caucus (by the way, because of our separation of the legislative and executive branches of government, Bray's is not a "government" contract and not ruled by the MCOIA, nor would Bruce be if he were hired on by caucus

Sheesh ... I don't have any love at all for the government, but even less for lousy editorializing

You obviously do not understand the words patronage appointment.

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