Finance loses second-in-command two weeks after minister Flaherty’s resignation

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OTTAWA – The Finance Department’s second-in-command has announced he is retiring, just two weeks after minister Jim Flaherty left his post.

Michael Horgan, a career public servant who had been the deputy minister in the government’s top financial portfolio the last five years, said in an email he will be leaving on April 19.

Last month, Flaherty also announced his resignation, citing personal reasons.

Newly appointed Finance Minister Joe Oliver said Horgan had performed “magnificent service for the country.”

He said he would name a replacement soon.

Oliver gave no reason for Horgan’s retirement, but noted that with almost 36 years of service he had reached the maximum in terms of his allowed pension benefits.

In an email to staff, Horgan said it had come time “to move on to another phase in life.”

Horgan was well respected in the public service, and in 2007 won the prime minister’s “Outstanding Achievement Award for Public Service.”

He has had numerous high-level positions in his career, including deputy minister of Indian and Northern Affairs, where he worked on the Kelowna Accord under former prime minister Paul Martin, deputy minister of Environment and president of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency.

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