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Ellis, Bossio appointed to federal committees

By Brendan Burke  [1]

BELLEVILLE – Recently elected local MPs Neil Ellis and Mike Bossio have added “federal committee member” to their political resumés.

Ellis, the MP for Bay of Quinte [2] riding, was named to the committee that oversees veterans’ affairs, while Hastings-Lennox and Addington [3] MP Bossio has assumed a seat on two committees: aboriginal affairs and the environment.

Both Ellis and Bossio are MPs with the governing Liberal Party of Canada. 

Ellis joins the Standing Committee on Veterans Affairs [4]. The committee, established in 2006 in a bid to decentralize government oversight of vertans’ issues, is tasked with regularly examining “all matters relating to the mandate, management and operation of the Department of Veterans Affairs,” along with any related issue brought forth by the House of Commons, according to Parliament’s website [5].

Committee members act as advisers to the Commons, making policy recommendations on veterans’ issues and care based on hearing from department officials, ministers and outside experts.

The committee consists of 10 MPs: six Liberals, three Conservatives and one New Democrat.

Ellis’s riding is home to the largest airbase [6] in Canada, Canadian Forces Base Trenton.

Bossio, who along with Ellis was elected to Parliament on Oct. 19, has been appointed to the Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development [7] and the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development. [8]

The Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development reviews House-referred legislation, spending reports and other issues related to the environment and sustainability.

The Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development oversees the Department of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, including the department’s management and operations. The committee studies and evaluates legislation and policy related to First Nations people.

Bossio is a seasoned advocate for environmental justice. He led the Citizens Against Melrose Quarry campaign to halt the building of a landfill in Tyendinaga Township. Bossio also gained recognition for his work as councillor for  Tyendinaga [9] between 1998 and 2000.

Ellis will take his seat on the veterans’ committee on Feb. 16, when it meets for its first session of the year.

Bossio will join the environment-focused committee Thursday when a chair is elected, while the aboriginal affairs committee is slated to convene at Parliament Hill the same day.