Charity drops refund request to Justin Trudeau, kicks out board members

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OTTAWA — The New Brunswick charity at the centre of a political firestorm over Liberal leader Justin Trudeau’s public-speaking fees this past spring has dropped its request for a refund.

The Grace Foundation has also cut ties with several board members, including one blamed for leaking a “private” letter about the issue to the federal Conservatives.

The moves come weeks after the foundation, which supports an 80-bed nursing home in Saint John, said it was “deeply distressed” the issue had become fodder for partisan attacks.

Foundation chairman Ian Webster could not be reached Monday.

But Trudeau spokeswoman Kate Monfette said the Liberal leader’s office was in recent contact with Webster “and he informed us that they will not be requesting a reimbursement.”

“They consider this matter closed,” Monfette added.

The foundation’s board of directors wrote in March to Speakers’ Spotlight, the agency through which Trudeau was hired for a June…

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