View Single Post
Old 01-20-2012, 06:02 PM   #3
wouldu like some tinfoil?
bmdbley'sBro's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: in your attic!
Posts: 4,670
^ lets hope..

but then theres also:

EI financing agency spends millions doing nothing

By Greg Weston, National Affairs Specialist CBC News Posted: Jan 19, 2012

A federal agency created by the Harper government with great political fanfare in 2008 is costing millions of dollars to achieve pretty much nothing.

The Canada Employment Insurance Financing Board has just about everything a budding government agency could want.

So far, it has spent over $3.3 million for new offices, computers and furniture, well-paid executives and staff, travel budgets, expense accounts, board meetings, and lots of pricey consultants.

All that's missing is a reason for it to exist at all.

The Conservative government set up the agency ostensibly to perform three main functions.

The first was to set the annual employment insurance contribution rates that determine how much Canadian workers and employers have to pay into the EI fund in a given year.

But in all three years the board has been in existence, the Harper government has simply capped EI rates to spare Canadian workers from potentially huge premium increases.

As a result, the rate-setting agency has yet to set a single rate.

The board's other main responsibility is to invest any surplus EI funds.

That has never happened, either.

Since the government started capping EI contribution rates, the employment insurance program has been running a deficit now totalling almost $9 billion.

There has simply never been a surplus dime for the board to invest.

Finally, the agency is charged with managing a $2 billion EI contingency fund the government promised to set up, but never did.

Not overwhelmed
In short, the board has no rates to set, no surplus to invest, no contingency fund to manage, and little chance any of that will change in the near future.

organization isn't exactly overwhelmed with work.

"We haven't had to do nearly as much as our original mandate intended us to do," Brown said in an interview.

"So we've slowed down on some of our development activities until it is clear that we are going to be able to do some of the things that we will be asked in the future."

The head of the Canadian Taxpayers' Federation is incensed.

"I think average taxpayers want to know what these people are doing with their time," Gregory Thomas tells CBC News.

"I think people need to call their MPs and let them know that they are tired of their money being wasted."

Raises for everyone
Mostly, the little agency that doesn't seems to have been keeping busy spending millions of dollars turning itself into a thoroughly modern bureaucracy.

Its published budget for the current year includes giving everyone raises, and moving the entire agency into new offices — all at an expected cost of $1.8 million.

the Rest:
bmdbley'sBro is offline   Reply With Quote