Thank you, Mr. Speaker. One of the parts I found most rewarding about my time as a Member of the Legislative Assembly of the Northwest Territories has been my involvement with public accounts committees.
Public accounts committees have a long tradition stretching back hundreds of years and are a notable feature of the Westminster system, from which our unique form of consensus government borrows some of its practices. Public accounts are where the government's books are looked at after a given fiscal year and where you can drill down into the details to see how taxpayer money was spent, ensure value for money for taxpayer dollars, and also ensure programs and services are being delivered appropriately. Public accounts committees work closely with supreme audit institutions in Canada and the Northwest Territories, that is the Office of the Auditor General.
Mr. Speaker, there are many organizations that work to bring different public accounts committees and members together to have these discussions. In Canada, that is the Canadian Council of Public Accounts Committees, which the Northwest Territories hosted early on in this term. This provides a form for good practice sharing and knowledgeable exchange in effective public financial management. I had the pleasure, along with my colleague the honourable Member from Sahtu, of attending the 2017 Westminster workshop for public accounts, the CAPAC conference, from December 4th to December 7th of last year, where I learned, networked, and brought back a whole new skill set that I will retain and utilize for the rest of my career on the Standing Committee on Government Operations and as a Parliamentarian.
The aim for this workshop was to build skills and capacity of chairs, Members, and clerks in Commonwealth public accounts committees to fulfil their remit to scrutinize the value of money and public spending and to hold governments to account for the delivery of public services. The objectives were to deliver key skills and knowledge and provide peer support, and to grow the expertise of these committees in promoting tax transparency, preventing tax avoidance, and encouraging country-by-country reporting in all legislatures.
Mr. Speaker, this conference provided me with valuable information about how we can make our public accounts systems better in the Northwest Territories and key contacts with Parliamentarians on public accounts committees across the entire Commonwealth. Mr. Speaker, I think this is the exact type of professional development that Parliamentarians need to be able to engage in freely to develop their skills and deliver better value-for-money analysis for the people of the Northwest Territories. Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker.