P3 maintenance costs astronomical

The Sask. Party will pay more than $800 million for foreign corporations to handle maintenance on just two P3 projects – which New Democrats say is a shocking waste of taxpayer money.

The Regina bypass P3 project includes $680 million in maintenance costs. The Saskatchewan Hospital North Battleford P3 contract includes $185 million in maintenance costs.

“These appear to be terrible deals the Sask. Party will reach into families’ pockets to pay for,” said NDP deputy leader Trent Wotherspoon. “I fundamentally disagree with their decision to send jobs to corporations from London and France instead of creating Saskatchewan jobs. And it’s becoming more obvious with the slow leak of details about these P3 rental schemes that taxpayers will be paying far more, far longer.”

The Sask. Party claims that the difference between a recent $1.2 billion estimate for the Regina bypass rent-a-road scheme and the current $1.88 billion price tag is maintenance costs. That means, to plow the road and mow the ditches around the P3 bypass in Regina, Saskatchewan will pay the corporation from France a whopping $680 million.

The Sask. party has divided the $407 million cost of the Saskatchewan Hospital North Battleford into $222 million in construction, and $185 million for maintenance.

“How could a brand new hospital possibly require so much maintenance that it nearly doubles the price?” asked Wotherspoon.

The annual maintenance and repair budget for the entire Prairie North Health Region in $4.6 million. That includes maintenance on the current Saskatchewan Hospital North Battleford and all the region’s hospitals and health care facilities.

“Signing away taxpayer dollars like this is a reckless waste of money,” said Wotherspoon. “The Sask. Party faced a choice to either create Saskatchewan jobs while paying less, or, send the contract to a foreign corporation and pay way more.

“They chose short-term politics over common sense, and expect us all to pay for it.”