Wednesday, January 2, 2013


I joined dozens of others at Government House yesterday for the Lieutenant Governor's  annual New Year’s Day levee.

Folks from all walks of life dressed-up to shake hands with Lieutenant Governor John Crosbie and his wife Jane.  Mr. Crosbie will retire from the role as the Queen's representative in the Spring.  He told the Western Star last summer "I don't plan to retire quietly into the moonlight,”

Back in 2008 at the last levee for the Honourable Edward Roberts, Mr. Crosbie told me that his appointment was unexpected and unblushingly stated ,"Well, I had a decision to make, it was Hoyles Home or Government House."

Many believe his successor, the 13th Lieutenant Governor, will be a women. This province has never had a female act in the role. Names tossed out today included Shannie Duff, Mary Walsh, Lynn Verge,  Dr. Edna Turpin & Dr. Susan Dyer Knight.

That is, unless the Prime Minister feels that after 12 men there is still no capable women for the LG’s job.

While I am on the topic of capable people. Newfoundland and Labrador is the only province in the country never to have been represented on the Supreme Court of Canada.  and should not have been denied this time.

The Lieutenant-Governor is appointed by the Governor General, on the advice of the Prime Minister of Canada, for a period of not less than five years

Our closest connection to the SCC was Mr. Justice William Ian Corneil Binniewe, who retired in 2011. He served as an advisor to the Government of Newfoundland on constitutional amendments to the Terms of Union and obtained occasional calls to the Bar of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Back to the Lieutenant-Governor. He is paid a salary and allowances by the Federal Government.

The Provincial Government provides administrative, household and operational funding for Government House.

The Federal Government expends  $123,900 for the lieutenant governor's annual salary, in addition to grants to assist with travel costs.

According to the 2012 Provincial Estimates,  the cost of providing salaries for the LG's support staff and the operating cost of Government House was $839,600 last year.

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