You can see the difference

In February, Public Eye filed a freedom of information for a "copy of the severance agreement for Annette Antoniak, the now former president and chief executive office of the BC Olympic and Paralympic Games Secretariat." Five months later, the New Democrats filed a similar requesting asking for "records relating to the terms and conditions relating to her departure, i.e. severance pay" as well as a number of other documents. In response, Public Eye got a copy of her unusual $300,000-plus severance deal. But the New Democrats got nothing. So why was that? Well, under questioning from opposition critic Doug Routley last Tuesday, Citizens' Services Minister Ben Stewart stated, "The questions were not identical; there are some differences. One party sought information regarding the particulars of a possible severance package, while the other sought information over why this person left the position. The difference in such terminology has resulted in each request being interpreted differently under the act. That's the important part." Fancy that!

2 Comments

Perhaps British Columbia's media need to lobby very hard to Xerox Washington State's public disclosure legal code & ombudsman where this would most likely never be tolerated. After all, if the media put pressure on BCLib leadership candidates next year or in 2011 to sign a pledge to reform BC FOIA... it'd do some good.

pressure the leadership candidates?

it would do some good, except for that lying thing.

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