Minister says MLAs Use Private E-mail for Governmental Purposes

    Jun 13, 2017

    CBC Canada reports that a senior provincial cabinet member claims that every MLA (member of the legislative assembly) uses private e-mail accounts for government business.

    “All the members have used their private email for business related to government to respond to constituents and, you know, myself included, as has every other member," Crown Investments Corporation Minister Joe Hargrave recently told reporters in Regina, Saskatchewan.

    A week earlier, a senior government official had been asked if personal e-mail accounts were used for government business by any cabinet ministers or senior staff in the premier's office. The official said that to her knowledge no one did.

    Hargrave’s practice came to light when he used his private account to respond to a citizen’s concern about the Saskatchewan Transportation Company.

    Hargrave has admitted to the mistake and says it will not happen again.

    The citizen, Marcus Grundahl, has taken the matter to Saskatchewan's information and privacy commissioner for review.

    CBC News asked the government and the official Opposition whether Hargrave's statement was accurate. An Opposition statement said their concern is with government members discussing NAFTA or other matters on private accounts. A government statement said the MLAs and ministers have been reminded to use their proper accounts.

    "Hopefully, that never happens again," Hargrave told the CBC. "Hopefully, that was sort of a one-and-done.”

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