NDP ordered to repay salaries spent at satellite offices

Parliament Hill. (Andre Forget/QMI Agency)

Parliament Hill. (Andre Forget/QMI Agency)

Jessica Hume, National Bureau

, Last Updated: 7:30 AM ET

OTTAWA — The NDP has been told to repay the salaries of employees who worked at party satellite offices in Quebec.

The board that oversees House of Commons spending found Tuesday the NDP owes a "significant" repayment on top of the $1.17 million already due for improperly paying for mailing privileges with the same parliamentary funds. Tory MP John Duncan, speaking for the board, said it was clear the NDP has broken spending rules.

"Several members of the NDP submitted false information about the place of work of some employees," Duncan told reporters. "Tax dollars used to pay these employees were not a proper use of parliamentary resources."

Duncan could not provide a dollar figure, as a full accounting was still being done, but said the total owed will likely be "significant" because the salaries represent several employees and date back to 2011.

Duncan said the board has asked House administration to figure out a plan to recoup the funds.

According to the rules, parliamentary employees must work in constituency offices or within the parliamentary precint.

NDP Leader Tom Mulcair has said all along the party followed the rules and that it had the approval of the House for its satellite offices.

House Speaker Andrew Scheer contradicted those claims before committee earlier this spring, testifying administrators had never been asked for approval of the satellite offices.

The NDP said that wasn't so, and indicated it would not be repaying the money.

NDP House leader Peter Julian accused the board of launching a "partisan attack" without "providing any tangible proof."

"The NDP will take the time to analyze this decision and evaluate our options before deciding on the next step."


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