Canadian taxpayers are footing the bill for the private chauffeurs of 53 senior Ottawa bureaucrats, the Toronto Sun reports.
Among those civil servants who have a private vehicle and driver are the Superintendent of Financial Institutions Jeremy Ruding and the President of the Public Service Commission Patric Borbey.
The cars and drivers are in addition to the personal chauffeur already afforded to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and those afforded to members of his Liberal cabinet.
According to government statistics, top civil servants in Canada can earn up to $350,000 a year including a 39% bonus on top of their salaries.
Just this year, the federal government arrived at an agreement to boost the salaries of civil servants including retroactive raises dating back to 2019. The Liberals also billed Canadians $36 million for home office equipment for civil servants who have to work from home, while many Canadians struggle to keep their jobs.
As for the driving habits of Trudeau’s ministers, a recent report revealed that Minister of Canadian Heritage Steven Guilbeault put 21,000 km on his government vehicle despite his past insistence that he would not drive.
When broken down to a monthly basis, Guilbeault put on average 3,000 km a month between January and August of 2020. Meanwhile, estimates show Canadian commuters drive an average 15,000 km.
Shortly after the 2019 election, Guilbeault told a Quebec radio program that he would avoid using a car as much as possible.
“I never needed to have a car. I understand that there are requirements when you are in a practice,” said Guilbeault.
“I don’t want to make a big ‘no, I’ll never do that’ statement, but I would try to do without. Why not? Maybe it won’t work, but at least I’ll try it.”
When questioned about the minister’s driving habits and his past insistence, his office claimed that the fault was the pandemic’s for changing “the way we socialize work and travel.”