Tightening the leash on the PBO
The Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada is echoing concerns expressed by the Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) about maintaining his office’s independence in the wake of changes proposed in the Liberal government’s omnibus budget bill. During the 2015 election the Liberals promised a more independent PBO. The current proposal establishes the PBO as a standalone entity – which is good – but then burdens the office with additional political oversight, which is completely contrary to the Officer’s raison d'être.
Independence is paramount to carrying out the PBO’s mandate. By speaking truth to power and providing objective analysis to cut through partisan political claims, the PBO provides Canadians with a unique and vital service. Public service professionals support evidence-based decision making in all its forms. The proposed legislation is a step in the wrong direction.