Christian Conservative Christian "Independent"

I'm an evangelical Christian, member of the CPC, but presently & unjustly exiled to wander the political wilderness.
All opinions expressed here are solely my own.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Key Sections of the AG's Report on "Colle-gate"

BigCityLib has the best (and basically the only) post on this scandal over on the Libbloggers, so cudos to him. However, he has posted some comments from the report, seeking to exonourate his Party.

Not so fast... here are a couple of other sections that don't paint so rosy a picture:
Did Politics Play a Role? (page 13)

We also found that, within the last four years, 43 of approximately 140 recipient-organization board members and key staff we selected for review had made political donations totaling $23,326, of which $16,814 went to the Ontario Liberal Party or one of its constitutency associations.

The remaining $6,512 went to the other two major provincial parties.
(in the interest of full disclosure, of course)

Iranian-Canadian Community Centre (pages 15-16)

The organization behind the Iranian-Canadian Community Centre was established only recently, having been incorporated in August 2005. In the 2005/06 fiscal year, it received a year-end grant of $200,000 to assist with the construction of a new community centre. We note as an aside that, since certain of the other grant programs administered by the Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration require an organization to have been operating for at least two years to be eligible for a grant, this organization would normally not have qualified for a grant under such programs. We also noted that there was no written request for the funding.

When the funds were received, they were invested 16 Special Review for the Premier of Ontario in a guaranteed investment certificate. We understand that the organization is currently working on acquiring the necessary land for the centre and has begun fundraising efforts for the project.

When it received the grant, the IranianCanadian Community Centre had several board members, two of whom resigned in March 2007: one to run as a Liberal candidate in the October 2007 provincial election and the other to become the President of the first individual’s constituency association.

Chinese Professionals Association of Canada

In February 2007, the Chinese Professionals Association of Canada submitted a request for funding to the Office of the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration to go toward the construction of a new career centre. In March 2007, it received a year-end grant of $250,000.

We noted that until April 2007, the President was the Treasurer of an Ontario Liberal constituency association. In addition, 10 of the Association’s board members were identified as having attended a fundraising event for the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration on October 19, 2006. Also, one former board member, who resigned from the board on October 26, 2006, has been working in the Minister’s Office since September 2006.

Both in this case and in the case of the former board members at the Iranian-Canadian Community Centre who are now campaigning for the Liberal Party, we found no evidence that political ties were a contributing factor in the receipt of grants by these organizations. However, given the lack of an open and transparent process in the provision of the grant to the recipient, the existence of political ties could create the perception that those ties played a role in the grant decision.
The link to the full report is here.

According to what we see here, there did seem to be a couple of links, but things don't seem to be too out of order, right? There's a CAVET EMPTOR in all this... I will direct you to the report, where the AG states on page 13 that, "One question we asked was whether political donations made by individuals or organizations might have played a role in the receipt by certain organizations of a year-end grant. To help address that question, we asked the Office of the Chief Election Officer to provide us with a list of the donations that the 29 grant recipients we selected for review and/or selected directors and key staff members had made to any of the three major political parties in the previous four years."

Notice that KEY PHRASE... "the 29 grant recipients we selected for review". From my reading, that would suggest that only 29 of the 112 groups that recieved grants (81 in 2005/2006, and 31 in 2006/2007) were throughly reviewed to see what sort of ties, if any, they had with any of the provincial parties.

Well, on pages 24-27, there's a list of all the groups that recieved grants. I'm sure that with a little digging, a whole load of links could be established. (that being said, however, it will be tougher for us, as the AG had access to the names of all riding Board members for the last four years, while we have just the current ones we can find)

If the AG can find links to several grants when reviewing just 29 of them, you can be sure there will be other links. From what I see here, there were links discovered to somewhere between 14% and 21% of the 29 grants reviewed... therefore, if we extrapolate that figure to the total 112 grants, there are likely at least links in anywhere from 16 to 23 of the grants... if not more.

Happy digging.

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3 Comments:

  • At Fri Jul 27, 02:09:00 PM EDT, Blogger Joanne (True Blue) said…

    I just saw the AG on City TV at noon.

    He said that about 1/2 of the grants went out merely due to conversations - i.e. No written request, no documentation.

    Quite shoddy, IMHO.

    I can't think of too many businesses that would last very long using those procedures.

     
  • At Fri Jul 27, 05:58:00 PM EDT, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I suggest you read blogger "Southwestern Ontario Liberal" blog today.

    Says it all folks - nothing changes from one party to the next.

    This is nothing to what Mike Harris did.

     
  • At Fri Jul 27, 10:51:00 PM EDT, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Kathlene Wynn was on the John Moore show at CFRB and had the nerve to declare that McGuinty is taking action to see it doesn't happen again and that the Auditor cleared the Liberals of any Political interference for the money hand outs.

    I agree with one of her comments , McGuinty WILL make sure Liberals never get caught stealing tax dollars to fund elections .
    As for her claim there was no Political interference , how could the Finance Minister and Premeire's Office not see the $32 million pass through the Office since they themselves must sign-off on the money to approve it.

    McGuinty will now join the acting troupe in the Liberal Governments who play the Sgt.Schultz role to a tee like Chretien,Martin and many Liberals did in the AdScam inquiry.

    Only a Liberal would boast to a Judge that they are wilfully ignorant and too stupid to have known what went on under their reign .

     

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