TORONTO—Former Ontario premier Dalton McGuinty says the rules on retaining government emails and correspondence are very confusing.
McGuinty says training for government and political staff won’t be enough, and he wants clearer rules to help workers determine which records must be kept for the archives.
He was called back to the justice committee hearings into cancelled gas plants after the privacy commissioner found staff in the former premier’s office broke the law by deleting all their emails.
McGuinty testified he was much more concerned with jobs, the economy and health care than with keeping track of emails.
The opposition parties say Liberal staff wiped out emails to try to cover up the cost of cancelling gas plants in Oakville and Mississauga, which is at least $585 million, far more than the $230 million McGuinty originally claimed.
Privacy Commissioner Ann Cavoukian told the committee earlier today that it was hard to believe the emails were wiped out for any reason other than to block public access to the documents.
Cavoukian told the committee that it’s “ludicrous” to suggest government emails must be deleted, as McGuinty’s former chief of staff testified last week.
Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak says he finds it hard to believe McGuinty didn’t know his chief of staff and top Liberals tried to wipe out their email accounts.
The New Democrats say the privacy commissioner’s report “cast a tremendous amount of doubt about the honesty of the (former) premier.”
The Ontario Provincial Police launched a criminal investigation after complaints by the Conservatives about the destruction of emails by Liberal staff.