Lobbying-law changes 'not on radar,' says N.S. premier after Chretien meeting

Nova Scotia's premier appears unworried by Jean Chretien's decision to simply ignore queries from provincial officials asking if the former prime minister was lobbying for a Cape Breton port proposal.

Stephen McNeil says it's not on his "radar" to consider changes that would give the lobbyists' registrar the power to investigate complaints about alleged abuse, as happens in other provinces.

The premier told reporters today that if a citizen feels the province's lobbying rules are broken, they can go to the police and lay a complaint there.

A retired union activist laid a complaint with the registrar of lobbyists after a March 21 meeting in Halifax between Chretien, McNeil and Transport Minister Geoff MacLellan.

Chretien is an international adviser to Sydney Harbour Investment Partners, which has been seeking investor support for the container port project.

The day before he met McNeil, Chretien described to reporters why he thought the premier should support the idea, though McNeil continues to deny any lobbying took place during the meeting.

A letter was sent by the lobbyists' registrar informing Chretien of the Act's requirements and recommending a response by the end of April, but the former prime minister hasn't answered two months later, and has been unavailable for comment.