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View Gabriel Ste-Marie Profile
All right, I understand. Thank you, Mr. Chair.
The Parliamentary Budget Officer has just issued a statement regarding supplementary estimates (A) 2020-21. Here is a lengthy excerpt:Parliament will vote on billions of dollars worth of authorities, which includes amounts for both COVID-19 and non COVID-19 measures. It will be difficult for parliamentarians to perform their critical role of properly scrutinizing proposed government spending in a four-hour window. They will have limited capacity to question witnesses, including public servants with expert knowledge of the programs funded through these estimates. Furthermore, they will not have the capacity to perform the critical role of amending, reducing or denying any provision in these estimates, despite the fact that opposition parties hold a majority of the seats in the House of Commons. Parliamentarians are therefore left with only two options: approve supplementary estimates (A) as tabled, or reject them.
I would like to hear the reaction of the Department of Finance officials. Is that their reading of the current situation?
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