Newly released records showed that a judicial inquiry into the use of emergency powers against the Freedom Convoy cost $17.5 million.According to Blacklock’s Reporter, the Privy Council has not disclosed the amount spent on lawyers.The Public Accounts report presented in Parliament revealed that the total cost of the Public Order Emergency Commission amounted to $17,478,831.The only specific information provided was a single line item showing an expense claim of $17,171 from Justice Paul Rouleau.The Privy Council Office declined to provide information in response to an Access to Information request seeking details about payments and billable hours from different legal counsels.There were 18 lawyers working for the Commission and the groups participating in the inquiry were given financial support to help cover their legal expenses.Documents released by the Commission showed lawyers representing Freedom Convoy organizers Tamara Lich, Chris Barber, Tom Marazzo, and others did not ask for subsidies. Other participants like The Democracy Fund, Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedom and the Attorneys General of Alberta and Saskatchewan also declined to request funding.“Applicants who requested funding provided varying degrees of detail in terms of the amounts they requested,” Rouleau wrote in a July 7, 2022 notice. The amounts requested were never disclosed.Intervenors who received subsidies included the Criminal Lawyers’ Association, Canadian Council of Criminal Defence Lawyers and the Ottawa Coalition of Residents and Businesses representing nine community groups. Also approved was the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, “a non-profit organization that receives no government funding for its advocacy purposes” with lawyers who work at no charge.The Calgary Chamber of Commerce sought and was recommended for an undisclosed grant. “It states that it is a not-for-profit, member-funded organization,” Justice Rouleau. “It states that due to the impact of COVID-19 on its members’ businesses, it has reduced its membership dues by a substantial amount, which has a corresponding impact on its operating budget.” On February 17, Rouleau supported the cabinet's decision to use the Emergencies Act to deal with the political demonstrations outside of Parliament.“I do not consider the factual basis for it to be overwhelming,” wrote Rouleau. “Reasonable and informed people could reach a different conclusion than the one I have arrived at.”MPs voted 185 in favour and 151 against using the Emergencies Act. There is still a decision pending in the Federal Court regarding a legal challenge brought forward by the Canadian Civil Liberties Association and other parties.“The federal government handed itself the power to make laws with almost no constraints,” Noa Mendelsohn Aviv, general counsel for the Liberties Association, earlier told reporters. Canadians should be “concerned about democracy, about equality, about justice and about rights,” she said.