HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY MANAGEMENT COMMISSION
A meeting of the House of Assembly Management Commission was held in the Committee Room, One Government Place, on Tuesday, November 13, 2018 at 11 a.m.
Present were: Chair, Hon. Kevin Murphy, Hon. Geoff MacLellan, Hon. Labi Kousoulis, Ms Suzanne Lohnes-Croft, Mr Ben Jessome, substituting for Mr Gordon Wilson, Mr Tim Halman, Hon. Chris d’Entremont, Hon. David Wilson and Mr Neil Ferguson, Chief Clerk.
Also present were Gordon D. Hebb, Q.C., Chief Legislative Counsel, Deborah Lusby, Director of Administration, Office of the Speaker and Annette M. Boucher, Q.C., Assistant Clerk.
1) Minutes of the June 12, 2018 meeting
It was moved by Hon. Chris d’Entremont and seconded by Mr Tim Halman that the minutes of the June 12, 2018 meeting be approved as circulated.
2) Business arising from the June 12, 2018 meeting minutes
- rent review – Ms Lusby reported that, as requested at the last meeting, a report on MLA rental rates was completed and circulated to the House Leaders. She has not received any further direction on the matter.
- barrier free constituency office – As requested at the last meeting, the Speaker sent a letter to Ms Paon advising her to investigate options for the paving of access to the accessible ramp at her constituency office. No work has been done to date and Ms Paon indicated in an email that she understands she has until June 20, 2019 to complete the work.
3) Chair – Audit Committee
Ms Boucher advised that Section 16 of the House of Assembly Management Commission Act requires the Commission to appoint a chair amongst one of the members of the Audit Committee.
It was moved by Hon. Labi Kousoulis and seconded by Hon. Chris d’Entremont that Gordon D. Moore, a member of the Audit Committee of the House of Assembly Management Commission, be appointed Chair of the Audit Committee pursuant to Section 16 of the House of Assembly Management Commission Act.
4) Appointment of 2018-19 Auditor
It was moved by Hon. Labi Kousoulis and seconded by Hon. Geoff MacLellan that on the recommendation of the Audit Committee of the House of Assembly Management Commission made at their September 11, 2018 meeting, that the Nova Scotia Auditor General be appointed as auditor of the accounts of the House of Assembly for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2019, pursuant to Section 22 of the House of Assembly Management Commission Act.
Ms Lusby presented the two following reports:
- 4th Qtr 2017-18 report as of March 31, 2018, Final; and
- 1st and 2nd Qtr 2018-19 report
The first report was updated on July 12, 2018 as this report can only be finalized once 90 days have passed after year end.
6) House of Assembly Management Commission Regulations
Ms Boucher presented an amendment for consideration that would allow the reimbursement of expenses related to interpretation, translation or other services required for Members to communicate with constituents.
It was moved by Hon. Geoff MacLellan and seconded by Hon. Chris d’Entremont that the House of Assembly Management Commission Regulations be amended by adding immediately after clause 21(1)(i) the following clause:
(ia) interpretation, translation or other services required to communicate with a constituent;
Ms Boucher presented amendments to Directive #1 for consideration adding in the list of items over $50.00 audio visual or other equipment to be used to enhance and improve constituency community presentations given by Members and encouraging Members to rent rather than purchase the equipment when renting would result in a cost saving.
It was moved by Hon. Chris d’Entremont and seconded by Hon. Geoff Maclellan that Directive #1 to the House of Assembly Management Commission Regulations dated September 28, 2010 and amended May 30, 2013 and January 15, 2015 be further amended by
- (i) adding the following clause immediately after clause (n) under the heading “Computer equipment under clause 23(1)(c) that cost greater than $50.00:”
(o) audio visual or other equipment to be used to enhance and improve constituency community presentations given by the member;
- adding immediately following clause (o) as a standalone paragraph the following:
Members are encouraged to consider renting rather than purchasing any item listed at clauses (a) to (o) above, if renting would result in a cost-saving.
7) Electoral Boundaries Commission
Ms Lusby circulated the current forecasted budget for the Electoral Boundaries Commission in the amount of $450,500 noting that expenditures to date have been $100,000. All the expenses will be paid by the Speaker’s office and will be reimbursed by the Treasury Board. It is expected that by the end of the calendar year forecast adjustments will be made as expenses relating to the interim report due November 30th will have been submitted for payment.
It was moved by Hon. Geoff MacLellan and seconded by Hon. Labi Kousoulis that the Electoral Boundaries Commission budget as presented be approved.
There being no further business, the Speaker adjourned the meeting at 11:18 a.m.
These minutes were approved by the Management Commission on January 22, 2019.