Williams’s U.S. care draws most support in Atlantic Canada, least in Quebec
“Atlantic Canadians — those who are closest to the area and perhaps closer to the situation than others — are really quite supportive of this decision by a threeto-one margin.
“ What we don’t know is why they’re supportive, whether it’s related to Danny Williams the person or their own personal experience with the health care system in the region.”
In Newfoundland and Labrador, the government has tried to steady shaken faith in local health care after a series of botched breast cancer tests led to an inquiry and a $17.5-million settlement.
The telephone survey done between Feb. 4 and 7 asked 2,033 respondents: “This week, the premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, Danny Williams, went to the United States for heart surgery. Do you think going to the U.S. for this surgery was appropriate or not?”
The poll has a margin of error of 2.2 per cent, 19 times out of 20. It included no follow-up questions that might have shed light on levels of support or disapproval.
Williams left the province for undisclosed heart surgery at an unnamed U.S. clinic on the advice of local doctors and consultants.
His deputy premier, Kathy Dunderdale, shunned calls for more detail last week. She lashed out at what she called a “ferocious” debate in Canada and the U.S., where Williams was swiftly used as a right-wing argument against any American shift toward public health care.
The premier’s spokeswoman said Thursday that he has been released from hospital and that doctors are pleased with his progress. But Elizabeth Matthews would not confirm where Williams is recovering, saying in an email his exact location “is not relevant.” HALIFAX — The Nova Scotia government indicated it will soon tighten spending rules for members of the legislature after it requested the man tasked to review allowances to provide an update on his work within weeks.
Former Speaker Art Donahoe said Thursday he will submit an interim report on allowances and perks to the board that oversees the regulations on members’ expense allowances.
Donahoe was enlisted in December to submit a full report by July 31.
“I’ve had discussions with the Speaker and with the premier and as a result of those discussions I will be presenting an interim report for the next meeting of the legislature internal economy board,” Donahoe told reporters.
Speaker Charlie Parker later said the board would meet before the end of the month, likely within two to three weeks.
Parker said that at that time, the board would be looking at draft regulations on the $84 per diem for members during legislative sittings to eliminate so-called double dipping.
He said it would also determine which excessive expenditures should be paid back and will recommend that all duplicate expenses that can be verified be repaid.
In a report on members’ expenses released last week, the province’s auditor general cited numerous examples of inappropriate or excessive spending and pointed out a need for clearer rules.