Premier Williams seals his reputation

Premier Danny Williams of Newfoundland and Labrador

While Premier Ed Stelmach of Alberta has yet to answer questions regarding his pay and its sources, another premier has been soft and direct when asked the same set of questions.

Maybe that soft baby seal fur is genetically prevalent on the east coast? In any case, what follows is the dialogue between one intrepid reporter and Premier Danny Williams.

From: Jack Locke
Sent: Friday, May 07, 2010 5:56 PM
To: Premier Danny Williams, Newfoundland and Labrador

DEAR PREMIER WILLIAMS,

I AM A JOURNALIST WORKING ON A STORY ABOUT THE PAYMENT OF MONEY BY PROVINCIAL POLITICAL PARTIES TO THEIR LEADERS/PREMIERS. CAN YOU PLEASE ANSWER THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS? I THANK YOU IN ADVANCE FOR YOUR REPLIES.

1. CAN YOU PLEASE CONFIRM WHETHER YOU DO, OR DO NOT, RECEIVE FUNDS FROM YOUR PARTY?

2. IF YES, WHEN DID YOU FIRST RECEIVED SUCH PAYMENTS?

3. IF YES, HOW MUCH YOU RECEIVE ANNUALLY FROM YOUR PARTY?

4. HOW MUCH DOES THE PREMIER OF NEWFOUNDLAND & LABRADOR RECEIVE ANNUALLY IN HIS ROLE AS PREMIER BY THE GOVERNMENT?

5. CAN YOU PLEASE PROVIDE A QUOTE IN EXPLANATION OF WHY YOUR PARTY PAYS THE PREMIER, WHY YOU ACCEPT, OR WHY THIS PRACTICE IS NOT FOLLOWED.

I REQUEST ANSWERS TO THESE QUESTIONS AT YOUR EARLIEST CONVENIENCE. AGAIN, I THANK YOU FOR YOUR ASSISTANCE.

from Elizabeth Matthews, Director of Communications
Office of the Premier, Government of NL
to Jack Locke
date Mon, May 10, 2010 at 8:24 AM

The Premier does not receive a salary from the Provincial Party. As for his government salary, he donates that to charity. Would you mind sharing which sharing which media outlet you work for? Thank you.

from Jack Locke
to Elizabeth Matthews
date Mon, May 10, 2010 at 1:51 PM

Thank you for your swift reply.

I must say, Premier Williams situation is rather remarkable, and honourable.

As for my media outlet, I am a freelancer. I will be pitching a story as it gets further along.

Lastly, just for the record, may I ask what amount Premier Williams is paid(which is donated to charity)?

from Elizabeth Matthews
to Jack Locke
date Mon, May 10, 2010 at 2:54 PM

The Premier receives a salary of $74,823 as Premier and $95,356 an MHA (Member of the House of Assembly) for a total of approx. $170,180. He donates this salary to the Williams’ Family Foundation which primarily provides funding to sick children and some other charities. This is a registered charitable organization. Thanks.

That’s it, that’s all. Within 3 days all questions posed to Premier Danny Williams were answered. Our next post will look at Alberta’s other opposition political leaders: David Swann, Danielle Smith, and maybe even Brian Mason.

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