Oh the naivete of Parliamentary Budget Officer Kevin Page. He says that, despite being ordered by Parliament to do so in 2010, the Department of National Defence did not provide him with full information about F-35 costs.
"Over the past few weeks, it has become clear that the Department of National Defence provided the PBO with figures that did not include all operating costs," Page told Parliament's public accounts committee on Thursday.
"The PBO understood that it had been provided with full life-cycle costs from DND as required."
Those operating costs — which have been estimated at around $10 billion over 20 years — have become central to the question of whether Canadians were misled in the weeks before the last federal election.
At that time, Page released a report which estimated that acquiring, maintaining and operating 65 F-35s would cost taxpayers nearly $30 billion.
The Defence Department responded by telling Parliament that the stealth fighter would actually cost $14.7 billion.