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P.E.I. independent MLA Bush Dumville can still attend standing committees

Bush Dumville recently tendered his resignation from the Liberal caucus and will sit as an independent MLA in the P.E.I. legislature.

(Guardian photo)
Bush Dumville is shown in the P.E.I. legislature. - The Guardian

If Bush Dumville so desires, he can still take part – to a restricted degree – in standing committees.

Now sitting as an independent, Dumville, the West-Royalty-Springvale MLA who resigned from the Liberal caucus on Jan. 31, can no longer sit on any standing committee.

Related: MLA Bush Dumville resigns from Liberal caucus to sit as independent

On Wednesday, Vernon River-Stratford MLA Alan McIsaac was elected to replace Dumville as chairman on the standing committee on education and economic development.

At the time of his departure from the government caucus, Dumville was a member of the standing committees on agriculture and fisheries; education and economic development, which he chaired; health and wellness; public accounts; and rules, regulations, private bills and privileges.

Also, Dumville had previously served as a member and chairman of the infrastructure and energy committee, but ceased to be a member, and by default ceased to be the chairman, of that committee on Jan. 16, prior to his departure from government caucus.

Related: Standing committee of P.E.I. Legislature quietly replaces Dumville as chairman

Still, Dumville or any MLA can attend any committee meeting, notes Ryan Reddin, legislative clerk assistant. However, if the MLA is not a member of the committee or a properly designated substitute, then he or she cannot vote, move motions or count toward quorum. Such visiting MLAs are allowed to participate in the meeting — for example by asking questions of witnesses — at the discretion of the committee through the chairman.

The one exception to the rule that any MLA can attend a committee meeting, adds Reddin, is that ministers of the Crown may not attend meetings of the standing committee on public accounts unless they are witnesses before the committee.

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