Senate to broadcast chamber audio online

Posted November 22nd, 2013 in Article, blog, Press Release by Doug Black

S040305E-018F_MED9I’m happy to share that, beginning next week, the audio of the Senate’s proceedings will be made publicly available on the Senate website. This is an important move towards greater transparency and a step in the right direction.

In my 7-Point Plan to improve the Senate, I called for webcasting live video of debate in the Senate Chamber, as is done in Australia, the United States, the UK and countless other upper chambers around the world. I continue to support that proposal and look forward to working with my colleagues in the Senate to make it a reality. Senate proceedings are open to the public here in Ottawa. I want to ensure that we offer the same experience to the people of Alberta as that enjoyed by those sitting in the Senate’s public gallery. Continue Reading »

A Modern Senate for a Modern Canada – Speech

Posted October 1st, 2013 in blog, Press Release, Speech/Remarks by Doug Black

SpeakingOn September 28, 2013, I outlined my 7-point action plan to improve the Senate’s relationship with Canadians in an address to the Progressive Conservative Youth of Alberta (PCYA) in Sylvan Lake, Alberta. In my speech I also spoke at length about the need for Albertans to continue to show leadership in the Senate reform debate. Finally, I discussed the important role of the Senate in Canada’s democracy and the need for fundamental reforms to give the Senate true legitimacy and accountability.

pcya exec


Read my 7-point plan for the Senate

Read a transcript of my speech






Article discussing the way forward on Senate expenses

Posted September 12th, 2013 in Article, blog by Doug Black

I am in complete agreement with Senator Comeau – Chair of the Senate’s Committee on Internal Economy – that the Senate should move to a single expense reporting system that improves consistency and reduces administrative burden. Senator Comeau’s comments can be found in a recent PostMedia article by Jordan Press here.

As I said when I put my detailed expense statements on my website last spring, I intend to continue to refine my approach and work with others to ensure that such disclosures simply and clearly provide necessary and relevant information to taxpayers. In my recently released 7-point action plan to improve the Senate’s relationship with Canadians, I called for more detailed online disclosure of Senators’ travel and hospitality expenses, and I am pleased to see growing momentum in that direction. I look forward to seeing proposals this fall as to how the Senate can improve expense transparency and accountability. In the meantime, I will continue to release detailed statements of my own expenses here on my website.

I also agree with Senator Comeau that the Senate needs to improve the understanding of what is and is not an eligible expense, for the benefit of both the public and Senators. We must ensure that rules are stringent enough to protect the interests of Canadian taxpayers, but not so restrictive that they handcuff Senators to Ottawa and prevent them from getting out and listening to Canadians.

Interview with Tencer & Grose from 630 CHED

Posted September 9th, 2013 in blog, Interview by Doug Black

I spoke with Tencer and Grose from 630 CHED this morning to discuss the role of the Senate, expenses and transparency. Listen here (Sept 9, hr 2):

Meet the one senator who wants you to look through his expenses: Globe and Mail

Posted September 9th, 2013 in Article, blog by Doug Black

Meet the one senator who wants you to look through his expenses: Globe and Mail

Josh Wingrove

Questions about personal expenses aren’t new for Doug Black – the only senator in Canada to post his expenses online is a man who has been through this before.

Since joining the Senate earlier this year, Mr. Black has been voluntarily publishing everything at a time when senators’ expenses are under scrutiny amid reviews of claims made by several current and former senators, including Patrick Brazeau, Mike Duffy, Mac Harb and Pamela Wallin.

In revealing all his claims, Mr. Black hopes to clear the air of what he calls the “baloney” questions about some spending and focus on issues.

“This whole discussion we’ve had over the past couple of months on expenses, senators’ expenses, has been a tremendous distraction. And I went to Ottawa to talk about the issues that are affecting Albertans. And I thought the best way to clean that up and to get through that was to just put it all out there for the whole world to see,” said Mr. Black, who says his top issue is market access for Canada’s energy sector. “…We need to get through this baloney to talk about the issues that matter.”

To read the full article, please click here (subscribers only).