Elizabeth May: With regard to the costs of the July 16, 2010, press conference in Ottawa, Ontario, at which the Minister of National Defence announced the government’s intention to procure F-35s for the Royal Canadian Air Force, what were the costs incurred by the government (not including the cost of $47,313 related to the model F-35 used at the conference and described in Order Paper question Q-596) for: (a) flying in a Canadian CF-18 as part of the press conference, including fuel, maintenance, storage, Departmental personnel, and transportation; (b) all personnel, including those from Department of National Defense or other Departments involved in the press conference; (c) audio-visual support, including Departmental personnel, equipment rentals, translation, and any contracting services provided; (d) venue setup and dismantling, including costs related to seating, catering, lighting, and accommodating media; and (e) the entire press conference inclusive, including those related to the model F-35 described in Order Paper question Q-596?
Hon. Peter MacKay: Mr. Speaker, with regard to (a), the costs related to the flight of a CF-18 during the press conference on July 16, 2010, were approximately $200 for the pilot’s hotel and per diem expenses. There were no costs associated with the aircraft itself, as it was using allocated annual flying hours related to the pilot’s training activities.
With regard to (b), the cost for personnel was $13,298, based on 230.25 hours of overtime that Department of National Defence civilian staff worked in support of, or in relation to, the conference. The temporary duty expenses for Royal Canadian Air Force personnel at this event were $5,362.
With regard to (c), audiovisual support for the press conference cost $22,603.
With regard to (d), the cost of a working lunch for subject matter experts totaled $113. Other venue costs included electricity at $2,178 and water and fruit platters at $236.
With regard to (e), the entire event cost the Government of Canada $47,513.