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Housing Services Corporation Accountability Act Gets Second Reading

Oxford MPP Ernie Hardeman has high hopes for his Housing Service Corporation Accountability Act following its second reading in the Legislature

The Housing Services Corporation Accountability Act has had it's second reading in the Ontario Legislature, and it's quickly gaining government support.

The bill was put forward by Oxford MPP Ernie Hardeman, who says the goal is to call it back for a third reading once a review has been finalized.  "We introduced a bill that changes the Accountability Act; the employees that make more than $100 000 a year in that organization must appear on the sunshine list.  The legislation presently mandates that all public housing must buy gas and insurance from the housing authority - this bill will change that to make it optional."

Hardeman's concern stems from details pouring in about extravagant trips and meals halfway around the world charged by members of the Housing Services Corporation. The lack of answers prompted Hardeman to draft up the Housing Services Accountability Act. "We had debated the bill. It was supported by everyone that was in the house - we were pleasantly surprised. Since the government supported it, they will call it back for a third reading.  They have a review going on. I would hope that the firm that is doing that review will recommend changes to see a Government Legislation that will actually do what my bill does, and have it pass the way it is."       

The MPP for Oxford County said one of the main reasons he brought forth the Housing Services Corporation Accountability Act was to bring attention to the nearly seven point five million dollars spent by members of the Housing Services Corporation.

Hardeman says he is glad he caught this problem when he did. "It has been an ongoing process that has been getting worse and worse.  There was some documentation that there were strange things going on; there is a freedom of information request and the information had just come back.  From reviewing that, pointed out that there was more that needed to be done. I have concerns of how we got here, and I think the people have a right to know more than what they know now."  Oxford's MPP stated his hope is for this bill to keep a better eye on the spending of these employees.

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