• Ontario policing reforms will mean officers can be suspended without pay

    The creation of an inspector general to monitor police services, penalties for officers who fail to co-operate in police watchdog investigations, and the ability to suspend officers without pay were part of an announcement Thursday to revamp policing and the police oversight system in Ontario…. Other proposed changes include: Greater SIU powers of investigation… Expanded SIU powers to lay criminal charges… Penalties for non-cooperation…

  • Law society’s new policy compels speech, crossing line that must not be crossed

    This policy crosses a line that should not be crossed. It is not enough that we obey. Now we must also agree and actively promote… “The source of the most insidious peril… is not evil wrongdoers seeking to do harm, but parochial bureaucrats seeking to do good.” I suspect Borovoy would be shocked that his warning would apply so acutely to the governing body of the legal profession.

  • Justin Trudeau goes halfway on access to information

    The new legislation, the first major update to the act since it was passed more than 30 years ago, does offer a number of welcome and significant improvements to the current system… What the legislation doesn’t do, however, is extend the disclosure rules to PMO or cabinet documents… Instead, the Liberals have tried to placate the public and transparency advocates by including a measure that would force ministerial offices to “proactively disclose” certain information.

  • Another government, another attempt to undermine the budget watchdog

    The new legislation… seek[s] to make the head of the PBO an independent officer of Parliament, like the auditor general or the privacy commissioner… as if to ensure the watchdog is not made too independent, the bill goes on, proposing a series of reforms that would limit the office’s access to information and eliminate important aspects of its mandate.

  • Ontario should create a college of policing

    “The requirements needed to enter and continue in the profession of policing in Ontario remain largely static, ill-defined, and inconsistent One solution, Tulloch argued, would be for the province to create a regulatory college that would oversee training and uphold ethical standards for police, as similar bodies do for law, medicine and many other professions…

  • Police oversight isn’t broken, it was built this way

    Thanks to Justice Michael Tulloch, who led the review and published his report last week, we have new clarity on the strategic dysfunction that is the SIU. Tulloch has made 129 recommendations for better police oversight, including dozens for the SIU. Many of Tulloch’s recommendations are painfully obvious… The tradition of having former police investigate current ones helps to explain why more than 97 per cent of all SIU investigations end without an officer being criminally charged.

  • Canada must make sure everyone pays fair share of taxes

    The Conference Board of Canada now estimates that the federal government is missing out on uncollected taxes that amount to at least $16 billion a year – and might even be as high as $47.8 billion… That’s enough, for example, to pay Canada’s entire defence budget more than twice over. It’s almost 10 times more than the estimated cost of a national childcare program.

  • Canada misses out on nearly $50 billion in tax each year

    “Offshore is really big dollars from a smaller number of entities, but the majority of the tax gap is actually small amounts from a large number of people” … Aggressive tax avoidance — techniques that comply with the letter of a law, but contravene its spirit — as well as simple mistakes on tax filings and nonpayment of taxes round out the causes of lost tax revenues in the tax gap, according to the report.

  • Equalization payments aren’t sexy but they deserve attention, too

    The aim is to ensure all provinces have the wherewithal to pay for social programs of similar size and scope. It’s a nation-building exercise… Everyone who pays taxes in Canada contributes to equalization, and every province has, at one time or another, benefited from it – yes, even Alberta… Painting it unkindly, as a rigged interregional welfare scheme, is a disservice…

  • Province proposes limiting powers of Ontario Municipal Board

    The quasi-judicial OMB — which hears disputes on everything from plans for monster homes to developers’ proposals for tall buildings that ignore city planning guidelines — has long been the bane of communities and councils. It is one of the most powerful appeal bodies of its kind in North America, with the ability to hear appeals as if they were new proposals and to overturn council decisions — allowing developers to circumvent the process of community consultation, review by city planning staff and approval by elected city councils.