HSC emergency room bidder flags Liberal

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HSC emergency room bidder flags Liberal favoritism: Petten
Petten says more evidence continues to be uncovered showing how Liberal favoritism is damaging the public procurement process in Newfoundland and Labrador.
Wednesday, January 4, 2023

(January 4, 2023, St. John’s) – Barry Petten, PC Official Opposition Shadow Minister for Public Procurement and MHA for Conception Bay South, says more evidence continues to be uncovered showing how Liberal favoritism is damaging the public procurement process in Newfoundland and Labrador.

An Access to Information request regarding renovations to the Health Sciences Centre Emergency room shows a frustrated bidder calling out Liberal favoritism – with no action taken by government to address the concerns. On August 16, one prospective bidder for the project wrote in an email to officials in the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure: ‘This tender is now unbiddable and seems as if it is tipped in Marco’s favour…’

“Here is clear evidence that the Liberal Government is harming the procurement processes in Newfoundland and Labrador. Companies are being scared away from bidding on public projects because they see the favoritism of the Furey Government,” said Petten.

“The Public Procurement process is about getting the best value for public dollars for public needs. When concerns over fairness are raised, it’s incumbent on government to take the concerns seriously. When all but one bidder dropped out for the HMP replacement, a PC Government would have restarted the process to ensure fairness and the best outcome for taxpayers.”

Petten says if the industry is responding to the Liberal Government this way, it’s a clear sign of a problem with procurement.

“Contractors are raising concerns about the procurement process, while contracts are being awarded to Liberal-connected companies for four times their original budget. The Premier can talk about a fair process, but the evidence is here in black and white: the industry is concerned about procurement tilting in the favour of the Premier’s friends,” said Petten.

“Whether it’s a hospital renovation or a fishing trip, the Premier is developing a disturbing track record of favoritism.”

A copy of the documents is available upon request.

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Contacts:

David Maher

Director of Strategic Communications

709-725-0984

DavidMaher@gov.nl.ca

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