‘A licence to print money’: NDP slams sweetheart deal currently under auditor investigation

The Saskatchewan NDP pointed out today that the Sask. Party’s largest corporate donor stands to bring in $2.2 million dollars each year renting out office space in Wascana Park while leasing that land for a dollar a year. Reiterating his party’s stance that the proposed project should not go ahead as conceived, NDP Leader Ryan Meili called on the government to at least put the sweetheart deal on hold until the provincial auditor releases her report.

“This government has steamrolled over concerns and rewritten the rules, ensuring that this project proposal has not received the proper scrutiny,” said Meili. “The process the government has followed has been to take over control of the Wascana Centre Authority, fire the architects that didn’t agree with them, and change the rules that don’t allow them to move forward. These actions represent a significant and damaging betrayal of the public trust.”

With a proposed 73,351 square feet available for Brandt to lease out, and conservatively estimating a per-square-foot lease rate of $30, the company can expect to bring in $2.2 million annually at full occupancy.

“The Sask. Party gave this company a licence to print money while talking about ‘tough choices’ to justify cutting supports in kids’ classrooms,” said NDP Critic for the Provincial Capital Commission Nicole Sarauer. “This deal cannot go ahead as conceived, and certainly should not be approved until the auditor has had a chance to review it.”