14 Jul 2015

Pan Am's over-spending $-billions,
but it's okay 'cause it's public money

If a group constructing a massive project for you set a budget of $1.4-billion, but later came back and said they were spending $2.5-billion, what would you do? Normally you would probably throw the whole team out the door, and perhaps sue them for the $1.1-billion overrun.

But in this case, the $1.1-billion overrun belongs to former Premier David Peterson’s Pan Am Games organizing committee, and even though two officers were fired, expenses continue to climb.
By the time they’re finished, I’ll bet it will cost $3-billion – well over double the amount we were told in the beginning we would be paying.

But considering that the Games are a big hit with influential folks in Toronto, there’s not nearly as much criticism of the atrocious waste of money as there would be if, say, Toronto Community Housing was found to have greatly overspent.

Hamilton Stadium: A Bargain at $6,041 per seat

Moreover, it seems that the proud folks of our “world class city” don’t want to blemish the image of the Games, which are running in Toronto and across Southwestern Ontario from July 7 to 26, followed by the ParaPan Am Games, August 7 to 15.



Games’ advocates point to all of the shiny facilities communities will inherit and, while many of them are very beneficial, in some cases, it appears we are not getting our money’s worth.

Officials are proud of the Athletes’ Village, a huge complex built on old scrubland near the Toronto waterfront. After the athletes leave, the buildings will become townhouses, condos and student housing for George Brown College. This sounds fine until we learn that the price tag just for construction of a bare-bones structure with no furnishings is at least $709-million.


Athletes’ Village gets an extra $1.4-million


And, at the last minute, Pan Am Games organizers spent $1.4 million upgrading the rough cement floors in the athletes village “to preserve the event's international image.”

There are 2,200 units in the complex. Hmmm . . . . over $700-million for housing. Just imagine how much housing the co-op folks could build if given this amount.

The biggest shocker is the construction of the Hamilton Pan Am Stadium, which is coming in at least $145-million for the 24,000-seat structure. Break it down and this comes to $6,041 per seat. Construction was finished two years late.

Travel expenses have certainly been abused. The Star says that critics claim up to $800,000 was spent on flying TO2015 and Pan American Sports Organization (PASO) officials to far-flung destinations where they were wined and dined.

The weird would-be porcupine mascot, Pachi, had cost us $383,045 as of last November and I can imagine expenses growing by another $75,000 or more.

Lots of ‘perks’ on the side


And, for whatever reason, there are lots of small perks, such as $8,220 for Toronto Argonauts tickets, $9,820 in Tim Hortons gift cards, yoga pants and jackets. That’s not all. There is a wine tour, flowers, parking tickets, dozens of catered meals and snacks, educational courses and professional dues for staff.

Now here’s a good one: No one can say within millions of dollars what security for the PanAms will end up costing. It’s unclear what the bill from the Ontario Provincial Police will be, and private security costs are now estimated at $81-million, double the amount budgeted just two years ago.

The obscenity of the degree of exploitation of the public dollar is understood when we learn that the fired CEO, Ian Troop, who was paid $477,000 a year, billed taxpayers 91 cents for parking and $1.89 for a cup of tea.

As a final slap in the face, we learn that the business community – the sector making profits from all of this – did not come through as expected. Last fall, the Ontario government had to put an additional $74 million into the Games, most of it because of lower than expected sponsorship revenues.

Had the public known that the original budget for the Games would double, perhaps they would have protested so much we would not have had the games. Officials claim that the first budget was not submitted low on purpose, but the budget was such a mess we really need to question their claim.

Interestingly, Torontonians will moan and groan if a Councillor spends, say, $5,000 on a trip or goes over their office budget a little, but people have no comprehension of the waste involved when we get into spending $2.5-billion.

Benefits mainly to elites


Giant sports events, whether the limited Canada Summer Games all the way up to the Olympics are exercises in gross public overspending while the benefits go mainly to an elite segment of the population.

Sure, we love the glitter of the Opening Ceremonies, perhaps 125 Canadians will win shiny medals, and there will be both sports and social legacies – but billions of dollars should not come out of the public purse for “circuses” when Ontario faces so many serious issues.

We should begin to worry that Toronto’s elite is now talking about a possible bid for the Olympics. If the idea of a bid gets off the ground, we need some new rules. First of all, participating countries should share some of the costs. When fundraising begins, hotels, restaurants, and special event locations, etc. should be expected to contribute financially. After all, they’re raking in billions while we pay a lot of the costs.

And finally, let’s make members of the organizing committee personally legally responsible for sticking to the first budget they submit if the Olympics become a possibility. Surely they’re familiar with this business concept.
-30-
CLICK HERE, to subscribe to my blog. Thanks Nick

11 comments:

  1. Hey, take a page out of the bogus elitsters in the EU--we taxpayers can damn well play this game--unless proved beyond an individual shadow of a doubt---then all identified beneficiaries get a 15% tax increase across the board as well as CRA personal and business tax audit...or future contracts get full examination any irregularities found translate into to automatic banning for a year per each violation.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HOW I GET A LEGIT LOAN @ 2% INTEREST RATE
      I was not sure of getting a legit loan lender online But when i could not face my Debt any more, my son was on hospital bed for surgery that involve huge money and i also needed some money to refinance and get a good home then i have to seeks for Assistance from friends and when there was no hope any more i decide to go online to seek a loan and i find VICTORIA LAWSON Trust Loan Firm (marianlawson@outlook.com) with 2% interest Rate and applied immediately with my details as directed. Within seven Days of my application She wired my loan amount with No hidden charges and i could not take care of my son medical bills, Renew my rent bill and pay off my debt. I will advice every loan seeker to contact VICTORIA LAWSON Trust Company with marianlawson@outlook.com For easy and safe transaction.

      *Full Name:_________

      *Address:_________

      *Tell:_________

      *loan amount:_________

      *Loan duration:_________

      *Country:_________

      *Purpose of loan:_________

      *Monthly Income:__________

      *Occupation__________

      *Next of kins :_________

      *Email :_________

      Delete
    2. HOW EDWARD LOAN COMPANY GRANTED ME A BUSINESS LOAN!!! {https://jonesloanfinance.wixsite.com/loan}

      Hello everyone, I am Oliver Johnson Moore from Zurich Switzerland and want to use this medium to express gratitude to EDWARD JONES for fulfilling his promise by granting me a loan, i was stuck in a financial situation and needed to refinance and pay my bills as well as start up a Business. I tried seeking for loans from various loan firms both private and corporate organisations but never succeeded and most banks declined my credit request. But as God would have it, i was introduced by a friend named Lisa Rice to EDWARD JONES LOAN COMPANY and undergone the due process of obtaining a loan from the company, to my greatest surprise within 28hrs just like my friend Lisa, i was also granted a loan of $387,000.00; So my advise to everyone who desires a loan, "if you must contact any firm with reference to securing a loan online with low interest rate of 2% and better repayment plans/schedule, please contact EDWARD JONES LOAN COMPANY. Besides, he doesn't know that am doing this but due to the joy in me, i'm so happy and wish to let people know more about this great company whom truly give out loans, it is my prayer that GOD should bless them more as they put smiles on peoples faces. You can contact them via email on {Jonesloanfinance@yahoo.com} or Text +1(307) 241-3712

      Delete
  2. Do you need a change in your financial status and you need a fast loan to start a business??? This is an opportunity for you to achieve your dream and become rich!!!! Apply now and contact Mr Luke Johnson at charitycorporationafrica@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  3. My name is Tom Wilson i am from Bublin Ireland, married, i have been searching for a genuine loan company for the past 3 months and all i got was bunch of scams who made me to trust them and at the end of the day, they took my money without giving anything in return, all my hope was lost, i got confused and frustrated, i find it very difficult to feed my family, i never wanted to have anything to do with loan companies on net, so went to borrow some money from a friend, i told him all that happened and he said he can help me, that he knows a loan company that can help me, that he just got a loan from them, he directed me on how to apply for the loan, i did as he told me, i applied, i never believed but i tried and to my greatest surprise i got the loan within 24 hours, i could not believe, i am so happy and rich again and i am thanking God that such loan companies like this still exist upon this scams all over the places, please i advise everyone out there who are in need of loan to go for to {unionloanservice@outlook.com} they will never fail, your life shall change as mine did. GOOD LUCK...

    ReplyDelete
  4. Greetings to you by ADIA.

    We are a France-Paris based investment company known as Avit
    Development Investment Authority working on expanding its portfolio
    globally and financing projects.

    We would be happy to fund and invest with you in any profitable
    project if you have any viable project we can finance by making mutual
    investment with you. If you are interested, kindly contact us
    on:avitinvestmentauthority2@gmail.com for more details.

    Looking forward hearing from you soonest.

    Yours truly,
    Mrs Kristina Anderson
    (Personal Assistant)
    Avit Development Investment Authority(ADIA)
    501 Avenue Montaigne,75008 Paris-France
    Paris-France.Avit Development Investment Authority (ADIA)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Are you financially squeezed?

    Are you financially squeezed? now: We offer all types Loan for new year loan,Personal Loan,Real Estate, Business plan,Renovation, Infrastructural, Hotel,Investment Loan ETC at low interest rate of 2%. contact us now woodmoore@yandex.com
    for more information

    Are you financially squeezed?

    ReplyDelete
  6. LEGIT LOAN OFFER APPLY TODAY:
    Do you need a loan for any reason? Interested parties should contact FIRST LOAN COMPANY today, E-mail: firstloancompany24@yahoo.com
    We offer private, commercial and personal loans with very minimal annual interest rate as low as 2% for 1 year to 25 years repayment duration period to all parts of the world. We give out loans from $5,000.00 to $1,000,000.00. Terms and conditions apply.

    Interested parties should contact the company via email for more information: Lender E-mail: firstloancompany24@yahoo.com
    Name of creditor: Mr. Adams Smith.

    ReplyDelete
  7. HOW EDWARD LOAN COMPANY GRANTED ME A BUSINESS LOAN!!! {https://jonesloanfinance.wixsite.com/loan}

    Hello everyone, I am Oliver Johnson Moore from Zurich Switzerland and want to use this medium to express gratitude to EDWARD JONES for fulfilling his promise by granting me a loan, i was stuck in a financial situation and needed to refinance and pay my bills as well as start up a Business. I tried seeking for loans from various loan firms both private and corporate organisations but never succeeded and most banks declined my credit request. But as God would have it, i was introduced by a friend named Lisa Rice to EDWARD JONES LOAN COMPANY and undergone the due process of obtaining a loan from the company, to my greatest surprise within 28hrs just like my friend Lisa, i was also granted a loan of $387,000.00; So my advise to everyone who desires a loan, "if you must contact any firm with reference to securing a loan online with low interest rate of 2% and better repayment plans/schedule, please contact EDWARD JONES LOAN COMPANY. Besides, he doesn't know that am doing this but due to the joy in me, i'm so happy and wish to let people know more about this great company whom truly give out loans, it is my prayer that GOD should bless them more as they put smiles on peoples faces. You can contact them via email on {Jonesloanfinance@yahoo.com} or Text +1(307) 241-3712

    ReplyDelete