FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
October 4, 2016
MINISTER’S ACCOUNTABILITY AND TRANSPARENCY ON SPECIAL PURPOSE ACCOUNT FAILS HUNTERS AND ANGLERS IN ONTARIO – MPP YUREK
QUEEN’S PARK – This morning MPP Jeff Yurek (Elgin-Middlesex-London) questioned the Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry on the lack of transparency of the expenditures of the Special Purpose Account.
“Is the Minister able to explain to hunters and anglers of this province how buying homes and paying for psychologists improves angling and hunting in Ontario?” questioned Yurek
The Special Purpose Account (SPA) was created years ago when the government initiated license fees for angling in Ontario. The SPA pools together all revenues from Hunting & Fishing licensing fees and royalties. The revenue in the SPA is then to be reinvested back into wildlife management to improve hunting and angling across the province.
The report obtained by the Aylmer District Stakeholder Committee shows that in 2011/12 the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry spent $69,000 to sell, buy and rent housing accommodations and $55,000 on psychologist and other medical services.
In addition, the stakeholders received an FOI response this summer stating that the Ministry does not track local expenditures for the Fish & Wildlife SPA.
“This is in direct contradiction to the Financial Administration Act that requires receipts and disbursements be recorded for Special Purpose Accounts.” stated Yurek.
“We know the MNRF has the information hunters and anglers want. The Minister must be transparent and release the details.” concluded Yurek.