I Hear a “No”

“I hear a No,” said the Speaker, after Pam Birdsall, MLA for Lunenburg, finished Resolution No. 1315 calling for the Liberal Party to finally unveil the secrecy around their trust fund fiasco:

Pam Birdsall: Therefore be it resolved that the Leader of the Official Opposition table with the Clerk of the House of Assembly, on or before May 17, 2013, all trust documents, the names of the trustees, financial statements, and all other relevant documentation related to the For the Public Good Trust and the Allan J. MacEachen Institute. Mr. Speaker, I request waiver of notice and passage without debate.

The Speaker: There has been a request for waiver. Is it agreed?

The Speaker: I hear a No.

In fact, there were several “No”s.  Did one of them come from Stephen McNeil? 

Typically, McNeil’s Liberals quickly changed tune, voting “Yes” during a surprise recorded vote that followed. It’s a pattern of theirs:

  • They vote “Yes,” but they mean “No”
  • They flash left, but they turn right
  • They say one thing, but they do another


In the end, 10 Liberals, including McNeil, voted to release the documentation regarding the trust fund by Friday.

Among the information/documents expected to be released are:

  • Name(s) of the trustee(s)
  • Electronic Transfer of Funds (form)
  • Declaration in the Matter of Trust Funds (form)
  • Trust Account Reports 2009-2013
  • Engagement for Accountants – Accountant’s Report on the Trust Account Report (ARTAR)  – see ARTAR checklist here: http://nsbs.org/sites/default/files/cms/forms/2013-01-21_accountants_report_on_the_trust_account_report.pdf
  • Trust ledgers, showing

    all monies received and disbursed explaining the purpose of any transfers and any unexpended balance,


  • Bank Statements or pass books, cashed cheques and detailed deposit slips for all trust and general


  • Registration documentation under the Societies Act relating to the Allan J. MacEachern Institute and the For the Public Good Trust
  • Names of staff and principles of the Allan J. MacEachern Institute and the For the Public Good Trust
  • Bank statements of the Allan J. MacEachen Institute and the For the Public Good Trust

Reporters will get the chance to pour over the material next weekend to see if it all meets minimal requirements of both the Trust Account Regulations of the Nova Scotia Barrister’s Society and the regulations under the Societies Act as well as reasonable expectations of transparency.

Mark Friday May 17 on your calendar – it’s going to be like Christmas in May.