Kevin Falcon will not commit to a full BC rail inquiry.

Just back from the Vancouver Sun live chat with Kevin Falcon, in which every question I submitted was given to Falcon except the last, because time ran out.

So, what can you expect from Kevin Falcon if he were to be the leader of the Liberals, or worse yet.. shudder… premier?

He will continue to use and promote P3 projects far and wide, because in his own words, the government can’t build projects on time or on budget or as good as a private partner can. He says that P3 projects are not off the book debt, and are a great way to build the things we need. He also claimed the Sea to Sky was built on budget and for less than the government could have as was the Canada line.  ( yes, clearly although he was transportation minister, he has no clue it has been shown time and time again that the projects would have been cheaper if the government had built them. )

He skirted right by the shadow tolls issue and did not address it.

When asked if he would commit to a full BC rail inquiry into the sale of the railroad and the legal fees paid to Basi and Virk, he emphatically stated ” NO, I will not commit to a full inquiry into the BC rail sale…”  but ” I will agree to an investigation into the legal fees being paid to Basi and Virk”

Falcons reasoning was that the people who admitted guilt as to the statement of facts is what the government had been saying all along, that it was a couple of criminals responsible and one person with some unethical behavior but that was it. But he sure wants to know why the legal fees were paid because that was something he sure didn’t agree to.

Falcon does plan to continue the South Fraser Perimeter road because he sees the bigger picture of what our future needs… ( I suspect he has no clue what the opening of the expanded Panama Canal is going to do to our ports in terms of traffic… can you say the port expansion and SFPR will become redundant?)

He also talked about the importance of our natural resources in terms of using them,making jobs for people in the north, etc etc..

Yes, it is clear to me that a vote for Kevin Falcon, is a vote for Gordon Campbell et al. All over again… Those liberals who want to rid themselves of the Campbell era stink would do well to step away from the Falcon, who is looking more and more like another Campbell buzzard.

17 thoughts on “Kevin Falcon will not commit to a full BC rail inquiry.

  1. I noted your questions were not answered in a timely fashion, example your question at 12:24 was skipped but then when you entered again, your question was returned to. I almost jumped in, to ask the same question, just to back you up 🙂
    Could have just been a coincidence……but.


    1. George, I do know from having live blogged previously that generally these setups do have a bit of a lag anyways,but one can expect Falcon had a Pace PR person sitting beside the moderator, which is to be expected. : ) But thank you for having my back! I have to say Falcon was in the hot seat once with the editor, when they talked about good debt and bad debt, and the editor called Falcon out for flip-flopping – it was bad when the NDP did it, but good now that the libs are doing

      I welcome Falcon anytime to a one on one, or live blog venue here. All the liberal candidates are invited to stop by anytime!

      May, couldn’t have said it better myself. I wonder if Falcon really understands how badly he comes across as another Campbell? Truly, it is quite remarkable.


  2. congratulations on getting him to answer all of your questions Laila, good work, so now we know the rest of the story. He doesn’t have clue OR he couldn’t care less if we get to the bottom of the BC Rail matter, and he either doesn’t understand business and costs both for construction but even more, the hidden tolls that the people of BC will be paying for decades and doesn’t understand how imperative it is to keep as much agriculture land in production as is possible in our province. We definitely do not need him leading a political party in this province and we do not need another Campbell ruling us in BC!


  3. The real ‘buzzard’ perched on Gordo’s ‘hanging tree’ in the background, (unless I am mistaken), involved in every shady and/or questionable enterprise by these double dealing deviants, is Macquarie.
    If I connected your dots correctly, Macquarie has a pivotal role in funky, fudgey, financing of these ‘off the books’, P3 deals as well as being connected in mysterious manner to Redflex and their scameras , and all the while casting an evil, covetous eye on water, electric and gas utility operations and collections.
    What ‘benefits’ flow to Gordo with this Macquarie relationship, other than hiding the ‘real’ costs of him ‘doing business’ in BC?


  4. You make a good point: ” et al “. Same rapine buzzard; same spots (BC blood).
    The BC First Party having first meeting soon. The Bloc in Quebec found support there for provincial integrity.
    Globalist Campbell has done an excellent job savaging provincial infrastructure; selling off BC Citizen’s assets off the back porch ‘ fer kickers ‘. Learned that the hard fought for Province’s maritime and Inter-tidal rights are being turned over to the Feds ( incl. aquaculture; over-riding existing contractual legal agreements with shellfish growers.)


  5. When they claim the P3s are on time and on budget an essential part of the equation is omitted. The concept of quality takes on a complete other meaning. While it is true that it is in the interest of the contractor to build the project so that their maintenance costs are low, it is not in the interest of the contractor for the project to last one day longer than the 35 or so years they are contracted to maintain the project.
    Bridges like the Iron Workers were built to last structurally for 100 years, the contractor would just as soon have the bridge need to be replaced as soon as possible and the best way to do this is to use substandard materials.
    These comments are based on years in the construction industry and noting the lesser quality of work and materials used in P3s. P3s may look new and shiny at thew beginning of the contract but at the end of the contract will be worn out ready to replace junk


  6. I don’t agree Glenn. There is no point in using substandard materials – ie, insignificant savings. Besides, there are checks and balances (yeh, they have the RCMP doing quality control! – Well, not quite). The actual construction costs pale in comparison to the financing, maintenance, tolls, engineering etc., not to mention selling the completed project. I’m pretty sure Laila will have more on that later.
    I was a contractor when Falcon first appeared on the scene, and IMO he didn’t know the difference between a tunnel and a bridge. Of course, first impressions are lasting impressions and I never gave him credit for learning on the job in the intervening years. Apparently I needn’t have, as I don’t think he was a fast learner.


  7. johnsaghast
    While I agree the cost savings in the actual construction are minimal but that does not stop some of these companies from saving a penny, besides one can expect the job to be sold in the first few years of operation while it still looks shiny new. Quality looks good on paper but one must realise that a piece of paper will lie still to write anything on it The last job I was on was an ISO 9000 job where the contractor did their own quality control as one of the senior executives in the company told me it was like the fox guarding the hen house.
    An ISO job can work with a reputable company where the standards serve as a check list to remind them of any thing they missed. The company I worked for used the ISO standards as a way to determine which documents to “modify”.
    Probably the biggest reason for the company to short the job was to get the bonus for finishing early and avoid the late penalties


  8. Valid points Glenn. Was that a bridge job across a lake?
    I based my observations on the ‘Good Old Days (Prior to PPP’s) when we still had a few ethics and weren’t encumbered with engineering, financing, maintenance or flogging the completed project to some pension fund. Our concern was building a project to a standard, well defined set of specifications, under responsible supervision. I understand that the supervision MIGHT have been corrupted, but not on MY watch. And having experienced both the G.O.D.’s and the PPP’s, I much prefer the former. I venture it was a good deal more economical, but then the times they are achanging – and I’m not keeping abreast.

    I still stand by my assessment of Falcon though. Our loss was the Health Ministry’s gain!


  9. johnsaghast
    The job was not across a lake. When I could not bring the company into line I left. after a 2 year battle I was literally lucky to escape with my life (during my battle we found out how despicable the company was – a good company for people like Falcon to make friends with). The good thing about the battle was the company finally learned they could not do business in Canada – seems regular Canadians are not like Falcon et al and expect quality work and safe working standards .
    Never was a fan of Falcon but when he wimped that the woman that tried to jump off the Iron Workers Bridge on Canada Day in 2008 should have jumped because he was inconvenienced and embarrassed in front of his visitors from California when he could not cruise the Highway to impress his visitors he lost any chance of ever getting my respect.


  10. John and Glen,
    Interestingly I spoke to a contractor in Calgary on a stop over on a trip I took recently.
    He’s in involved it pp3 contracts on a regular basis there and accordingly informed me of how this works. The government puts out the requirements of every aspect of materials to be used etc. and a cost determined at what it should cost using premium materials for construction. This amount is then related to the public and committed to by Government but it is what happens after that is interesting. Being committed to so many taxpayers dollars the developer will then go to suppliers and offer an incentive or bonus if you will to them if materials of lesser quality or longevity are actually used in the project, those that agree will then get the contract to them. Understand the taxpayer is now committed through the original contract to the developer to pay the original amount. This is the way it is done and everyone understands it. It’s like I can sell you a cement block for 1.00 and make .25 or I can sell you a cement block for 1.50 and make .30 but I can get a bonus of $100,000 if I sell you the cheaper ones. We are the ones left in the dark, it’s our money but no one is guarding it as it is just o part of how business is done in these days when no one is on top of anything especially pertaining to tax payer dollars.


  11. Don F.
    that is exactly the game with one step more. Either as part of the agreement with the supplier or later during the quality control stage the appropriate mill certificates etc that indicate the correct quality material was used are supplied and the official books show nothing is amiss. The only time the problem will be found is when for example: the bridge fails and investigation shows the material used is not the material indicated in the quality control documents; unfortunately at this stage the original company involved has probably sold their investment and as in the case of the job I was last on the principals have returned to their home country and usually retired.
    In the long run it will probably not affect me but I do have a concern for pension funds in the distant future as it will probably be them left holding the bag of possibly expensive repairs/replacement and lawsuits.


  12. Not for a moment did I ever believe Falcon was anything other than a Gordo clone but I still enjoyed your article Laila! And the discussion – especially the insightful comments near the end by johnsagahast, Don F, and Glenn.


  13. Hi Laila.

    There’s an interesting conversation ongoing at my place about how best to push for a full Public Inquiry on BC Rail … the current suggestion is to approach Steven Point, the current Lieutenant Governor of BC.

    Point is said to be an excellent person, a First Nations person, and a former judge. It’s just possible that his heart may be on our side. We are thinking that L-G Point may know a lot about the BC Rail issue from the government perspective … but not so much from the perspective of how the citizens of BC feel about the semi-secret hand-over of such a huge public asset to a private corporation whose shares are held largely by U.S. citizens (Bill Gates with 30%).

    I hope others will take up the cause and write their careful letters of appeal to him (e.mail address on the L-G’s web-site). British Columbians have waited over 7 years and already paid $17.3 million and we found out boom-all … but we dare not forget that there’s a ton of documentation sitting there ready to be disclosed to the public … if we call a Public Inquiry; or … or ready to be destroyed (so the rumour goes) if these papers fall into the wrong hands. Please tell Steven Point why B.C. needs a full Public Inquiry into all aspects of the BC Rail – CN deal(s).

    The Legislature Raids


  14. Thank you for this Mary! I strongly urge all my readers to follow suit with this recommendation and work hard to begin an inquiry.
    You can reach LG Steven Point through the following avenues:

    (250) 387-2080
    (250) 387-2078
    or by writing to him at the following address:
    1401 Rockland Avenue
    Victoria, British Columbia
    Canada V8S 1V9

    and FYI, please afford the LG his due respect in your correspondance by adhering to protocal when contacting him with your requests :

    The full title of the Lieutenant Governor is:

    His Honour, The Honourable Steven Point
    Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia
    The Lieutenant Governor is addressed personally in the second person initially as “Your Honour,” and thereafter as “Sir.” In the third person, the Lieutenant Governor is referred to as “His Honour” or “The Lieutenant Governor.”


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