Sask. Party hires zero Sask. companies as part of hospital P3

The government will give a P3 contract to build and maintain the Saskatchewan Hospital at North Battleford to an international consortium that does not include even one single Saskatchewan business.

The contract will be negotiated with a consortium from the United Kingdom, British Columbia, Alberta and Quebec. It includes:

  • United Kingdom corporation Carillion
  • United Kingdom corporation Carillion Private Finance
  • Quebec corporation WSP Canada
  • British Columbia corporation Kasian Architecture Interior Design and Planning
  • Alberta corporation Graham Design Builders
  • Alberta corporation Gracorp Capital Advisors

“This is a huge contract to design, build, maintain and finance with a hefty profit margin a Saskatchewan hospital, and the contract will likely last about 30 years,” said NDP deputy leader Trent Wotherspoon. “Giving it to an international consortium with no Saskatchewan involvement is literally sending hundreds of millions of dollars to other economies instead of bolstering our own with this project.”

Wotherspoon said the P3 approach typically costs more, and takes longer, as is already shown in the extremely long delays in getting the Saskatchewan Hospital at North Battleford started – and it’s now facing a lengthy and expensive round of contract negotiations with the international consortium.

“Why would we pay more to enter into a complex ownership agreement that has out-of-province and out-of-country corporations running our hospital?” Wotherspoon asked.

The Sask. Party continues to use so-called Value For Money reports, which the provincial auditor, along with Ontario’s Auditor General and other independent experts, has shown are manufactured estimates crafted to falsely make straightforward public ownership and operation of a project look more expensive than a P3.

In Ontario, the Auditor General reported that 74 P3 projects, despite the Value for Money reports, cost taxpayers an additional $8 billion over the cost of straightforward financing, building and ownership.

The Opposition NDP introduced a bill that would require the government to be transparent with taxpayers about the price of P3s and have independent evaluation of their costs – but the government refused, and voted against The Public Private Partnership Transparency and Accountability Act.