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QUESTION PERIOD — Privy Council Office

Federal Public Service

May 9, 2024

Government leader, or Government Representative in the Senate, 110,000 new public service jobs have been created since your government took office. I tried to calculate the payroll that this number might represent, but there isn’t enough room on my calculator for all the zeros. The equation gives me a cost of 1.4 to the power of 10. On top of this additional payroll, we’re paying $21 billion in consulting fees.

Leader, have your government and your Prime Minister lost all control?

Hon. Marc Gold (Government Representative in the Senate) [ - ]

Thank you for the question. The answer is no, and I could easily sit back down and leave it at that. However, you often accuse me of not answering questions, so I will try to flesh out my answer.

It’s not a question of losing control, but rather of ensuring that our public service serves Canadians, after years of budget cuts in the past. Added to this are the challenges posed by the pandemic. The government certainly hasn’t control. On the contrary, the government is acting responsibly for the well-being of Canadians.

If I may, I have some advice for the government. Ms. Freeland said she wanted to reduce the size of the public service by 5,000 employees over the next four years.

May I suggest that, to make this undertaking as efficient as possible, the first person to go should be the Prime Minister?

Senator Gold [ - ]

While this government is open to suggestions, amendments and recommendations from this noble chamber, I will decline to convey your suggestion to the minister you named.

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