The Atlantic director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation believes until all the recommendations from the auditor-general are implemented, we haven’t really learned our lesson from Atcon.
A recent scathing report on Atcon by auditor-general Kim MacPherson says while Opportunities New Brunswick reported it had implemented 15 of the 19 recommendations, in reality, only four of those were ever put in place. The report also states that the $50-million loan by the Shawn Graham government was never going to save the company.
Kevin Lacey says that it should trouble each tax-paying New Brunswicker that the previous recommendations from the auditor-general were not implemented and he says that means another Atcon could happen in the future.
“The onus should have been on our politicans to ensure that our money was protected. Instead, their first priority seemed to be to throw more money at it,” says Lacey.
“I do think this raises the question about whether or not government should be in the game of subsidizing or giving away money to these corporations in the first place.”
Lacey says that if Opportunities New Brunswick does not want to implement these recommendations in a timely fashion then the head of ONB should be fired. Lacey is echoing the provincial leader of the PC party Blaine Higgs, who is calling for the firing of Stephen Lund.
There are eight new recommendations to strengthen the financial analysis provided to cabinet for future decisions on financial help.