06/11/2015 06:11 EDT | Updated 06/11/2016 05:59 EDT

Manitoba government eyes new laws for transparency, even at city hall

WINNIPEG - The Manitoba government is proposing new laws that it says will increase transparency, both provincially and at Winnipeg city hall.

One bill would increase identity protection for so-called whistleblowers — people who want to report government wrongdoing but also remain anonymous.

The bill would also give more power to the provincial ombudsman to investigate and report on complaints.

The second bill extends whistleblower protection to municipal employees in Winnipeg.

It also paves the way for Winnipeg city hall to develop a code of conduct for councillors and new policies governing land transactions and business contracts.

Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman, who was elected last fall, has been seeking such powers and welcomed the changes as a way to help increase accountability.

Both bills were introduced in the legislature Thuirsday and could become law later this year.