Senator Brazeau’s office confirms his district property – a $10,800 vacant lot
OTTAWA – Senator Patrick Brazeau’s office has clarified where the former Conservative owns property in his Senate district – a vacant lot worth $10,800 and purchased two days before he was sworn in as a senator.
Brazeau’s office confirmed he owns land in Chertsey, Que., after a Global News story pointed out that Quebec senators don’t have to provide ongoing proof they own $4,000 worth of land in their districts as set out in the Constitution.
After previously saying she could not confirm where the land was, Brazeau’s spokeswoman Debby Simms said Thursday that the senator owns a property in Chertsey, which is located in his district of Repentigny. She also provided Global News with the postal code.
Land records show a Patrick Brazeau registered to 140 Wellington St. in Ottawa, which houses Senate offices, purchased a 3000-square metre lot on Castor Avenue in Chertsey for $10,800.
An official with the municipality of Chertsey said Brazeau purchased the lot on Jan. 6, 2009.
Brazeau was named to the Senate by Prime Minister Stephen Harper on Dec. 22, 2008, and sworn in on Jan. 8, 2009.
While initially suggesting Brazeau’s property might be in or near Chertsey, Simms later said she was unable to access the files to confirm the data. The Senate communications branch said it did not have the information either.
Quebec is the only province where senators are appointed to a specific division, defined by 24 boundaries illustrated on a map dating back to 1859.
But despite the Conservatives declaring the end of the “honour system,” Quebec senators only have to prove they own the property when first appointed.
After that, they simply sign a declaration saying they meet the requirements to sit in the upper chamber at the beginning of each Parliamentary session.
In a follow-up email Thursday, Senate spokeswoman Annie Joannette said she was “not aware” that the Senate has information about where a property is located. She said the Senate clerk only administers the declaration of qualification to sit in the Senate.
Brazeau is one of several senators embroiled in an expense scandal and has seen his wages garnished to repay almost $48,000 in living expenses.
He will also appear in court next week on assault and sexual assault charges and has been on a forced leave of absence with pay since February.
This week, Brazeau’s office denied reports of his arrest after police cars reportedly visited a residence in Gatineau. CBC reported the senator was sent to hospital Tuesday morning but Simms said she would not comment on personal medical information.
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