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Kenney’s office silent on Huckabay severance cash

If the past is anything to go by, the severance cheque to Huckabay could be in the six figures.

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It’s been radio silence from Premier Jason Kenney’s office on the status of any severance payment to former chief-of-staff Jamie Huckabay.

The Western Standard has been trying daily, since last Friday to get details of any Huckabay severance package but haven’t received a response. Attempts have also been made to ask Kenney himself at press conferences, but the Standard hasn’t been chosen to ask a question at any of the premier’s media opportunities.

But if the past is anything to go by, the severance cheque to Huckabay could be in the six figures.

The last time a (COS) got replaced mid-term was in 2012, when Stephen Carter left the job with then-premier Alison Redford.

Stephen Carter (photo credit: Calgary Sun)

Even though he had only been on the job for six months, Carter left the job in April 2012, with a $130,000 cheque.

Carter, whose company defaulted on $600,000 in court-ordered payments, was Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi’s campaign chair in 2010.

A huge hubbub erupted when Carter’s severance was initially not made public.

Redford said she couldn’t release the figure because of FOIP laws but announced the provincial government would be forming a new policy that would see all salary and severance information for senior government employees disclosed by the end of the year.

In the end, Carter tweeted the amount of severance himself on October of 2013. He said he had negotiated his own severance contract that paid him the $130,000.

“If that’s the full amount, that’s still pretty eye-popping,” said then-Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith.

“A six-figure severance for six months worth of work? An employee who voluntarily leaves should not get severance at all. This certainly doesn’t happen in the private sector.”

Huckabay was fired by Kenney during the UCP snowbird scandal, when it was discovered at least 10 MLAs and staffers had jetted out of the province for warmer climes, despite health recommendations advising against non-essential travel. Huckabay flew to the U.K.

The province was also in lockdown, meaning Christmas was cancelled for most people because household gatherings were banned. The measures meant people were not able to visit relatives in long term care centres over the holiday.

The Municipal Affairs Minister Tracy Allard lost her cabinet position – and the $60,000 bump in salary that came with it – after she was ordered back to the province from Hawaii, where she was having “a 17-year-traditional” Christmas gathering.

Huckabay’s publicly posted contract, dated April 30, 2019, lists his salary as $8,620.69 every two weeks – for a yearly total of $224,137,94.

It is not known whether he negotiated his own severance package.

Huckabay’s contract

Huckabay was a longtime Kenney ally, working with him on his UCP leadership campaign.

Hukabay’s contract can be reviewed here.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
Twitter.com/nobby7694

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard and the Vice-President: News Division of Western Standard New Media Corp. He has served as the City Editor of the Calgary Sun and has covered Alberta news for nearly 40 years. dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Guest

    January 13, 2021 at 11:14 pm

    Reposting:
    I keep hearing ” it’s part of their contract” from the powers that be. Sad.

    I say, end contracts for staffers. They go on the government of Alberta payroll and are classed within pay grades that meets their duties and skill sets. No separation pay, no special deals or bonuses.

    We as taxpayers are paying these staffers to begin with and I say $60,000 in severance is a slap in the face to every Albertan now out of a job because of lockdowns and being told to stay home and mentally suffer while this lad takes a vacation. Probably knowing it was the wrong thing to do.

    Poor leadership on this one Premier Kenney poor.

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LETTER: Does Copping have scientific evidence to continue with vaccine passports?

“Surely our government would not discriminate against any Albertans without a sound scientific basis for doing so.”

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RE: Vaccine passports now mandatory in Alberta

My wife and I took it upon ourselves to get tested for immunity to the COVID-19 virus at our own cost. Several other couples in our community have done the same thing. The test is carried out by the Mayo Clinic so I think we can all agree it is done by a very credible organization.

Both my wife and I tested >250 which is the highest level of immunity that they register. It is also the same level of immunity they show on the most vaccinated people. 

With this in mind, I ask the Minister of Health and the entire UCP government, what is the scientific basis for your continuing to impose the Restrictions Exemption Program (REP) to discriminate against us and restrict us from being able to participate in society?

Surely our government would not discriminate against any Albertans without a sound scientific basis for doing so.

Murray Woods
Linden, AB

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‘Galileo’ stockbroker loses COVID case

Grammond explained judicial notice of obvious facts is intended to ensuring plaintiffs with pointless claims do not “bog down the judicial process” with unnecessary arguments.

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A Montreal stockbroker who likened himself to Galileo and said COVID-19 wasn’t real had his case tossed out of Federal Court, says Blacklock’s Reporter.

“Courts make decisions based on evidence brought in each particular case,” wrote Justice Sébastien Grammond.

“Some facts however are so obvious courts assume their existence and no evidence of them is required. This is called judicial notice.”

Lucien Khodeir filed a federal challenge of Treasury Board vaccination orders for employees.

Khodeir was not personally affected by the orders issued last October 6. The court was told he works as a stock trader for CIBC World Markets.

Khodeir in his submission said vaccine mandates were unnecessary since the coronavirus did not exist, and proposed to call three expert witnesses.

“It is pure speculation,” said the court.

“In his submissions, Mr. Khodeir compares himself to Galileo who was persecuted in the 17th century for asserting that the Earth revolves around the Sun, a theory unanimously accepted today. Yet unlike Mr. Khodeir, Galileo buttressed the heliocentric theory with facts, especially his discovery of Jupiter’s moons.

“In contrast, Mr. Khodeir asks us to believe his assertions regarding the coronavirus without providing any tangible fact in support. The comparison is unfair to the great Italian scholar. Mr. Khodeir’s case has no scientific footing.”

Grammond explained judicial notice of obvious facts is intended to ensuring plaintiffs with pointless claims do not “bog down the judicial process” with unnecessary arguments.

“Over the last two years most people on this planet have been affected in various ways by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said the court.

“It has become common knowledge COVID-19 is caused by a virus.

“Numerous trusted sources of information have repeated this fact to the point that it is now beyond reasonable dispute. There is a lack of debate on this issue in scientific circles.”

The Federal Court noted dismissal of the claim was unrelated to numerous cases awaiting trial in which vaccine orders are being challenged as unnecessary, intrusive and unconstitutional. None of the plaintiffs challenging vaccine orders have disputed the existence of the coronavirus.

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Study claims Olympic mandatory app means zero privacy

It was found the server responses are not completely secure, meaning it could be possible for an outside source to create fake notifications for the users or direct them to fake sites.

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A mandatory app for Beijing 2022 Olympic athletes poses many personal security risks including collection of vulnerable medical information, says a new Canadian study.

The University of Toronto study analysis of the MY2022 Olympics app, examined the data collection, privacy policy, and censorship content.

The study called the flaws “simple but devastating,” as the security can be worked around pertaining to individuals’ voice audio and file transfers.

The app’s data collection policy is clear, however, its security breaches the rules of Google’s Unwanted Software Policy, Apple’s App Store guidelines, and even China’s domestic laws on privacy protection.

Medical and travel history, demographic information, and health customs forms that include passport details, are all vulnerable information on the app.

It was found the server responses are not completely secure, meaning it could be possible for an outside source to create fake notifications for the users or direct them to fake sites.

The Chinese government owns the Beijing Financial Holdings Group, which are the owners of the MY2022 app.

Part of its function is to monitor the health of participants related to COVID-19, including vaccination status, passport information and other personal details for international users.

The report said that, according to the official Olympics Games Playbook, such information can be processed by Chinese government authorities and Beijing Organizing Committee.

MY2022 also contains a list of 2,442 “politically sensitive” keywords that are flagged based on the Chinese government’s discretion.

Additionally, the app does not inform users of what other organizations’ data could be shared.

The app is necessary for all attendants, including spectators, athletes, and journalists.

All visitors to the games will need to be fully vaccinated based on origin-country rules or attain approval of exemption and quarantine for 21 days prior if unvaccinated according to the playbook.

All participants will also be COVID-19 tested daily.

The 2022 Beijing Olympics were already shrouded in controversy, as global protests in February of 2021 arose against the games being held due to China’s ongoing genocide against the Uyghur people in Xinjiang.

Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom have all pledged a diplomatic boycott of the games, refusing to send any government officials.

Ewa Sudyk is a reporter with the Western Standard
esudyk@westernstandardonline.com

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