Friday, July 27, 2007

Is Colle a scapegoat? - The Verdict

I think it's pretty safe to assume that Ex-Minister Colle is 'taking one for the team' here.

Whether or not that will have any impact on the October election is up to the citizens of Ontario.

Interesting though, that during a phone-in show at noon on Toronto's CityNews, Auditor General McCarter was the guest. The phone question was: "Will you vote for the Liberals in the upcoming election?"

At the end of the program, the votes were tallied:

YES - 491

NO - 1401

There is an online poll on the main City News site. Here's your chance, Libloggers.

And Ontario, you get to deliver the final verdict in October.

* * * *
More here: Funding Scandal Claims Cabinet Minister (Star):

Colle resigned as minister yesterday after Auditor General Jim McCarter slammed spending controls on the grants as among "the worst that we've ever seen." Colle acknowledged the money was often doled out with little or no paperwork.

I have to admit that the Star has been right on top of this all along.

And from the 'third party':

"Dalton McGuinty can't fob off responsibility for this scandal on to one disgraced cabinet minister," Hampton said in a statement.

"The issue is not Mike Colle's actions. It's McGuinty's attitude – his lack of standards, fairness and accountability. This is his responsibility and his failure," he said.

This bit is interesting from Hansard, April 26, 2007. Elizabeth Witmer asks Colle:

You are quoted in the Toronto Star on April 20 as saying that this money “has to go through [the] other ministers”—the Minister of Finance, who is the Liberal Party campaign chair, and the Minister of Public Infrastructure Renewal—“and ultimately, I guess, by cabinet.” Now, these are your words; they’re not my words. Will you, Minister, please tell us what direction you received from the Liberal Party campaign chair as to who was to receive this money?

The answer is complete obfuscation.

* * * *

Uh-oh. I just happened upon this little tidbit from the Star. O.k. I take everything back I ever said about the Star. Maybe they are changing their colours?

...The premier himself was with Colle when the cheque was presented at a dinner last August, praising cricket as a "unifying force" for ethnic communities but not realizing that he'd land in hot water with the auditor.

"The assumption that I'd made in my capacity as premier is that the protocols were in place, systems were in place, rules were in place to ensure that this was all being done in the best way possible," McGuinty said yesterday...

Dalton, remember what they say about people who ASSUME something? It makes an ASS out of and U and ME.

* * * *
And just this last little link.

The Iranian-Canadian Community Centre of Toronto, got a $200,000 grant from Ontario's ministry of citizenship and immigration last year to help build a community centre in the Richmond Hill area.

But the auditor found no written request for funding. In fact, since the group was operating for less than two years, it didn't qualify for a grant under other programs administered by the ministry.

"We had a number of groups where there wasn't any documentation of what they wanted the money for," McCarter noted.

As first reported by the Toronto Star last spring, the group had numerous Liberal connections.

One member of its executive had worked for Health Minister George Smitherman. Another, Reza Moridi, has since left the executive and become a Liberal candidate for the Oct. 10 provincial election.

Yet another quit to become a Liberal riding association president. And another is a long-time acquaintance of Finance Minister Greg Sorbara.

However, McCarter concluded the political connections were not a factor in the group getting the grant.

O.K. Let the electorate decide.


Sandy said...

Well done Joanne. My server (same as JN) was down off and on most of the day (more off than on) so I finally got something up on this topic. It's a gift for John Tory. I hope it is a gift that keeps on giving and that he runs with it.

On a different topic, I just read a good one at Fred's blog "Gay and Right" but I couldn't leave him a thankyou because my browser can't see the "letter verifications." If you stop by there, say thanks for the neat story. It's a perfect example of how blinded the left can be.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

I'm not sure which post you're referring too, Sandy.

Anonymous said...

BATB has yet another story(Candian Blue Lemons) of Lib corruption...20 year old who won't face serious charges 'cuz he was too young and it was just a silly mistake to steal from the Young Liberals penny pot...sillly boy!
At least the $20,000 was their own...not taxpayers money.
Nothing about this on CTV web site...but big news about the young hockey players that partied too hard and were arrested in Minnesota.
MSM turns blind eye again.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Thanks, Vicki. So much to blog about; so little time.