1988 Internal Economy report: “The purpose of the research allowance is to provide funds to assist Senators in carrying out their duties in relation to their Senate responsibilities.”
Total office budget – incl research – during Duffy years was $150k … research/consulting budget was around $70K. SM not aware Duffy ever exceeded his research and staffing budget.
1988 Internal Economy report: Senators have "full discretion" on choosing "public policy topics, studies they wish to pursue."
DB asks if fitness of elderly, PEI issues are Senate responsibilities
1988 Internal Economy report: “While the monies allocated must be expended on Senate related activities, Senators should have full discretion in selecting the public policy topics and studies they wish to pursue and these funds may be utilized for other matters such as preparation of speeches, draft replies to correspondence, clerical assistance or other related matters according to the needs of the individual Senator.”
DB: That’s very broad, that completely open-ended, isn’t it?
DB: The concept of research is wide open, based on individual needs of Senator.
DB: The Senator has latitude what he wants done and who does it
Now talking about Senate Procurement Policy, approved on October 20, 2011
The 1988 Internal Economy guideline for research/consultant contracts was replaced with this document in 2011. DB asks if that was a big change, SM says yes
SM says all of Duffy’s contracts would have been under old guidelines
Bayne back on Senate Administrative Rules
Bayne says SARs give senators latitude and discretion when it comes to staffing, research – point he made last week, and again this morning
DB starting off: “We’ve already been over this (the Senate Administrative Rules)” and “some have described them as excruciating details, I don’t do that to you.” Chuckles in courtroom.
DB on definitions in the SARs…
“Staff” – DB: That include volunteers, they are part of his staff? / SM: Yes.
SM agrees there are many rules, guidelines overtime
DB reads a section that states Senate Administration must advise senator when they're going against the rules – because “you guys are supposed to be the experts” / SM: Yes.
SARs say senator can have staff "hired and paid out of Senator's office budget." Bayne says includes volunteers. Makhlouf says no -- you cannot pay a volunteer; they volunteer. Bayne asks where rule is written that they can’t be paid. SM can’t point one out. Context: Duffy accused of paying a volunteer $500 from budget.
DB reading SARs’ Senators’ Staff: “Every Senator is entitled to cause staff to be hired and paid out of the Senator’s office budget to assist in carrying out the Senator’s parliamentary functions.”
SM: But not pay volunteers. They’re considered part of the office. The Senator can retain a service of a volunteer. We never pay a volunteer. They’re volunteers. They are voluntary assistance.
DB: Can you show me a guideline?
SM When I was trained, a volunteer is a voluntary assistance and are not paid.
DB (Going through the definition again.)
SM: I’m telling you that we don’t process payment for volunteers. They are volunteers… they do volunteer work without payment.
Makhlouf says volunteers have to have security clearance and not be paid.
Bayne asks SM “Where did that come from?” (not paying volunteers) / SM: It’s a direction from our directorate.
Crown objects to the line of questioning, saying there is no guideline that says volunteers can be paid
Judge: “There doesn’t seem to be a guideline for the time period that we’re interested in.” “That catches my interest.”
Defence looking at a a document listing framing services and photographs as an allowable service under "Senators’ Research and Office Expense Budget". The Crown alleged yesterday that Duffy used his budget to enlarge and frame some photos. SM noted yesterday -- and again today -- that photo services aren't part of "research" (her area of expertise) and she wouldn't have approved it in her role of HR officer
Exhibit A, Tab 15D “Senators’ Research and Office Expense Budget, Summary of Guidelines” – given to Duffy by Senate Finance Director
DB: It can’t be personal and private, it has to be related to your parliamentary duties?
DB: You can’t carry over your budget?
DB: All Senators are not only entitled to the office budget, they get to use the money? SM: Yes
DB: Most of the 105 use all of it? Otherwise it would lapse. SM: I don’t have an answer to this answer. I’m not financial person.
DB: In the budget envelope, the senator an reallocate funds during the fiscal year? SM: Yes, it depends on the Senators’ needs.
Appendix A – kind of things that are allowed
DB notes: “Advertising, publicity and public relations charges”
SM: If I'm in my office, I have to look at the whole application – you’re giving me only a few words, I can’t base the decision based on a few words.
DB: If my application said “research, reputation management, Senate website design and management” – you’d approve that.