February 25, 2014
OTTAWA — B.C. conservation groups are asking the federal auditor general’s office to investigate the Harper government’s response to the $26-million Fraser River sockeye salmon inquiry that was completed in 2012.
Critics have argued that the federal government not only ignored most of Justice Bruce Cohen’s recommendations, but also moved to weaken habitat protection laws and cut fisheries protection staff.
Watershed Watch Salmon Society executive director Craig Orr said a provision of the Auditor General’s Act is being used that allows citizens to submit petitions posing specific questions.
The petition system, added to the act in 1995, requires answers within 120 days and can ultimately lead to an audit.
“We are left with no choice but to call on the Auditor General of Canada to investigate exactly what the federal government has done to review the Cohen Commission recommendations and report back to Canadians,” Orr said Monday.