David Vardy, Ron Penney and I have responded to the call of
the Muskrat Falls Commission of Inquiry for submissions
from the public on the interpretation of the Terms of Reference.
– one that provides full context for the public policy decision to announce and
then sanction the project. It also seeks an investigation into matters relating
to the management of the project and its long term effects on ratepayers and
all the citizens of the province.
Writers on this Blog have been strong opponents of the Muskrat
Falls project and equally strong proponents of processes of oversight and
transparency. David Vardy and Ron Penney have been – and still are – two of the most articulate and
forceful advocates. David Vardy, in
particular, has done the heavy lifting for this submission and Ron and I want to
acknowledge that fact.
should be examined. Issues already identified in the Terms of Reference have been excluded. The submission highlights how each issue is a suitable fit for investigation by the Commission.
We make no pretense to having covered every question. The
Muskrat Falls project is both large and complex. Many people, whether they have worked on the project or are members of a citizenry waiting for the bill, will have a view as to the reasons we are
in the current mess, the implications for the future of the province and how
those matters should bear on the focus of the Inquiry. For those reasons the Commissioner needs to
hear from as many people as possible.
in our submission a request for examination of the role of the Government of Canada in
the debacle. Without the federal loan guarantee it is highly
unlikely the project would have been financed.
the then federal Minister of Finance urging caution, with no effect. While the
bulk of the blame is ours the Federal Government was our enabler.
Unfortunately the constitution doesn’t allow a provincial inquiry to examine
the actions of the Federal Government. This is an issue to which the Uncle
Gnarley Blog will give further illumination in the coming weeks as
“solutions” to the fiscal crisis are considered.
overall thrust by emailing the Inquiry Commissioner, Judge Richard LeBlanc at:
Support letters or additional submissions should be sent by February 15th. Following that date the Inquiry is committed to provide “an interpretation of the wording concerned” with the Terms of Reference only and “will not be an explanation of the work to be undertaken by the Commission
relevant to each Term of Reference or a determination of any matter to be
where you find support for them in the actual wording of the Terms of Reference.