What they said
vs. What really happened
Broken Promises on Record
Scandal Starts Hereprev nextThat's what we call... A Broken Promise
What they said...
On Monday, February 27 news broke that the Dexter government spent hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars without tendering and in violation of procurement policies. The money was paid to a public relations firm with connections deep inside the Premier’s Office.
Premier Dexter and his cabinet remained silent on the matter and sent staffers and backbenchers to deal with the heated questions from the media.
In the February 28, 2012 Chronicle Herald, the government tried to argue that tendering could be waived in “… an unforeseeable situation of urgency or emergency where the good, service or construction requirement cannot be obtained by means of open procurement process.”
By Wednesday, February 29, the premier still refused to take responsibility.
The Public Accounts Committee held on the February 29 attempted to call Paul Black, the premier’s director of policy and community outreach and former MT&L employee. The NDP members blocked opposition attempts to have Black brought before Public Accounts to answer questions about the untendered business given to his former employer.
What really happened...The premier’s silence on this matter is disturbing because he was once a vocal opponent of untendered spending.
In the November 17, 2006 edition of the Daily News, when asked about an untendered Conservative contract, Dexter said, “These kinds of decisions should be discussed publicly. The people who pay the price are being kept in the dark.”
Again, in 2007 Dexter spoke out against untendered spending. In response to Conservative promises of increased transparency around tendering, Dexter said, “It would be about time.”
Dexter even suggested that untendered contracts should be brought before the Public Accounts Committee.
“One of the places they could really deal with that examination would be before (the) public accounts (committee),” said Dexter.
Jim Morton, an NDP backbencher, also flip-flopped on the emergency nature of the Ships Start Here campaign. On Monday Morton argued it was an emergency situation, but as of Wednesday he changed his tune and said, “I’ve certainly not looked at it as an emergency, I’ve looked at is as something that’s important…”
You can hear it for yourself:
What a difference 48 hours can make.
Morton was also pressed to provide details about the bid, but was unable, unwilling or not allowed to disclose any such details. Here are his repeated responses to requests for details:
The Dexter government took a good news campaign and tarnished it with cronyism and corruption through untendered spending. Ships Start Here is now Scandal Starts Here and we have only the Dexter government to blame
© 2012 NS Liberal Party