Catherine McKenna Spent Big On Photos During Paris Climate Conference

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OTTAWA — The federal Conservatives say Environment Minister Catherine McKenna needs to repay money paid to a photographer during a climate change conference in Paris last year.

Documents obtained under the Access to Information Act and made available to The Canadian Press by the Conservatives indicate McKenna's department paid a French photojournalist nearly $11,000 to take pictures of the minister and her staff during the COP21 conference.

The actual cost was $6,600 dollars, McKenna said, but her office mistakenly converted that to Euros.

catherine mckennaCatherine McKenna's department paid a French photojournalist nearly $11,000. (Photo: Reuters)

Quebec Conservative MP Gerard Deltell says McKenna is ultimately responsible for the expense, and should also apologize to Canadians for the awarding of the contract.

The photo contract revelation comes after Health Minister Jane Philpott said she would repay $520 billed to taxpayers to access Air Canada lounges in North America and Europe.

Last week, Philpott also said she would repay $3,700 that was spent on car services, along with any other expenses deemed inappropriate by her department.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau acknowledged today that his government must do better to control such expenses and left open the possibility of greater transparency in divulging ministerial spending.

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