Monday, January 28, 2013

Goodbye Steve, Hello Judy

Old: Point
One day, British Columbia had a chief for Lieutenant-Governor.

The next day it was a cowgirl.

The province's first aboriginal to occupy Government House, Steven Point, was given a farewell ceremony Nov. 1, 2012. Point was appointed in 2007 by Premier Gordon Campbell and served through the 2010 Winter Olympics.

Judith Guichon, the incoming representative of the Queen (number 29 in the province's history), was sworn-in a day later. Both once-every-five years happenings took place at the Legislature with the required amounts of pomp and circumstance.

In a rare show of frugality, the two events came in way under budget. The farewell was budgeted at $7,915 and the swearing-in $7,835.

New: Guichon
Point's swan-song actually cost $2,860.42, including the parting gift of an $1,114.50 guitar inscribed with his name, from Riversong Guitars in Kamloops. For those keeping score at home, the government correctly spelled his name this time (unlike the embarrassing spelling errors on the forms signed by incoming cabinet ministers at their swearing-in ceremonies).

Guichon's installation cost only $2,666.76.

Add it up and taxpayers were only dinged $5,527.18. See all the documents, including the invitations, programs and guest lists, below.
Yap's secret swearing-in

Compare that with the $3,600 closed-door ceremony held March 24, 2012 when Premier Christy Clark shuffled her cabinet. Point presided at a swearing-in ceremony for John Yap at Vancouver's Chinese Cultural Centre (right) that was a secret affair until a news release was issued after the unusual Saturday afternoon event.

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