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KIA president says documents will be made more accessible, but salaries won't be disclosed

Kono Tattuinee
Kono Tattuinee, president of the Kivalliq Inuit Association, says more documents for beneficiaries will be made available online, but publishing the salaries of the KIA's elected officials is not going to happen. photo courtesy of Gord Billard

Following criticism from a Kivalliq MLA over a lack of transparency, the head of the Kivalliq Inuit Association (KIA) is committing to make documents more accessible.

KIA President Kono Tattuinee told Kivalliq News on March 26 that the Inuit association will develop an information brochure to post on its website and send to each community liaison officer in the region in reference to the benefits Kivallirmiut receive in partnership with Calm Air. These benefits include family fares, beneficiary fares and some freight benefits.

Inuit Impact Benefits Agreements are public documents and will also be shared on the KIA's website, Tattuinee added.

These comments come after a March 15 statement in the legislative assembly by Aivilik MLA Patterk Netser, who commended the KIA for the help it provided to impacted communities during the Covid-19 pandemic, but he called for greater transparency and accountability from the organization.

“We need to see more openness, in respect to the agreements that it enters into with such entities as airlines and the natural resource sector extraction companies,” said Netser. “We have not heard much reporting in terms of the Inuit impact benefit agreement from our organization and it is time to open the books to the people.”

He asked the KIA to make its salaries and benefits known to the public, as the legislative assembly does, and he advocated for greater support for Arctic College students.

However, due to confidentiality and privacy laws, the organization is not prepared to share information on salary and benefits paid to KIA staff members, at any level, Tattuinee stated.

Mining royalties received by the KIA are “protected” and administered through KIA's Legacy Fund Bylaw, he added.

"May I remind all Kivallirmiut that all KIA's bylaws are public documents and are accessible to any Kivalliq beneficiary upon request," Tattuinee said.