06 August 2009

Pork appointment at PUB

Another one of the Tory faithful has gone to his reward as a full-time commissioner of public utilities.

Jim Oxford will start work on September 9th.

Regular readers will note that just before the last provincial election the governing Conservatives announced a public competition for both the chair and commissioners jobs.  They collected a few resumes but then scrapped the whole idea shortly afterward.

The Public Service Commission, the crowd that supposedly ran the competition, refused to provide any substantive information to your humble e-scribbler when he inquired about the whole mess last year. They would confirm a competition had started but beyond that, there was nothing but stony silence.

The absence of a genuinely impartial process for selecting commissioners might be the reason why the minister making Oxford’s appointment had to go to the lengths of pointing out that the public utilities board is an independent body.

Either that or Tom Marshall was sensitive to the fact that Oxford was not only a career public servant in Mount Pearl but the guy who managed the Tory party finances since the year A.D. Naught. 

Oxford joins Andy Wells, the chairman appointed last year.