As politician expenses continue to be scrutinized around the country, one provincial party is hoping to head off any criticism on how its members spend taxpayer dollars.
The NDP has begun posting detailed travel expense reports of all its MLAs on its website, including the two members from the Tri-Cities.
According to the claim report, Port Coquitlam MLA Mike Farnworth spent $3,459 in the month of July on travel expenses that included airfare, taxi and meals.
For example, on July 2, the claim report stated the longtime MLA claimed 35 kilometres in travel worth $18.20, another $208 for airfare presumably to get to Victoria and $48 for lunch and dinner only.
Another example, on July 18, Farnworth spent $17.35 on two taxi rides combined, another $208 for airfare and $61 for his MLA per diem.
Rookie Coquitlam-Maillardville MLA Selina Robinson racked up $2,476 in travel expenses for the month of July.
One example for July 22, she claimed $10 on two miscellaneous transportation expenses, $189 on airfare $61 for her MLA per diem.
Robinson said she always pushed for transparency as a city councillor, adding it is important for people to understand where their tax dollars are going.
"I think it's important for all politicians at all levels of government to demonstrate to the taxpayers how their taxpayer dollars are being used," she told the Tri-Cities NOW.
"This is one way of demonstrating to the public that most of us are responsible with taxpayer dollars"
Robinson said in her case she paid particular attention to finding the most efficient and cost effective way to get to the legislature in Victoria, which she contends is using air travel.
She also suggested posting expenses not only should ease the mind of weary taxpayers, but also hold the politicians accountable.
And after walking a few weeks in an MLA's shoes, Robinson said she appreciates there is no time on the job to cook for yourself working 14-hour days, adding that eating out is a necessity.
She also noted it was the NDP's plan to post the monthly expenses from now on.
In the meantime, it's been reported the Liberals are considering a similar plan to post MLA expenses, but nothing specific has been confirmed.
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