Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Minister Miffed That Head Archivist Billed Taxpayers for Spanish Lessons

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Minister Miffed That Head Archivist Billed Taxpayers for Spanish Lessons

Article excerpt

Taxpayers paid archivist's Spanish lessons

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OTTAWA - The head of Library and Archives Canada has landed in agua caliente -- hot water -- after billing taxpayers almost $4,500 for personal Spanish lessons.

Canadian Heritage Minister James Moore says he intends to speak "very soon" to Daniel Caron about the inappropriate spending.

And judging from Moore's clipped responses in the House of Commons, the conversation won't be a pleasant one.

Moore says Caron's spending on Spanish lessons is outside Library and Archives Canada's mandate to preserve the country's documentary heritage.

The issue arose after QMI Agency reported that Caron spent $4,482 in 2011-12 to learn Spanish.

He also signed up for another $10,000 worth of lessons, which were contracted for the following two years, but Library and Archives says no further money was spent helping Caron brush up on his espanol.

"Spending at Library and Archives Canada must be directed at serving Canadians, not serving one's self," Moore told the Commons on Tuesday. …

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