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Finance Minister's Cronyism Broke Federal Rules

From May 14, 2008

It was learned in early 2008 that Finance Minister Jim Flaherty awarded a speech-writing contract to a former associate. Worse, it was an untendered contract which underwent no bidding process. For two months of work, Jim Flaherty's friend, Hugh MacPhie, was paid an astounding $122,430 dollars.

For any contract over $25,000, the Treasury Board requires a multiple bidding process, and this was not done. For a party that prides itself on accountability and the wise use of tax-payer money, this action by the Finance Minister was a disgrace. Unfortunately, the MacPhie contract was not the only questionable contract awarded.

The Cons skirted the rules again when they gave a contract for $24,900 dollars to Sara Beth Mintz, vice-president of the Ontario Progressive Conservative Party. The contract was just barely under the Treasury Board's limit, and was thus deemed 'Ok', despite the blatant wastefulness of tax-payer dollars.

In total, more than $300,000 dollars worth of contracts were given out, often just under the Treasury Board limit, avoiding the bidding process.

The Conservative party said they would end patronage and special deals in the last election campaign, but their actions prove otherwise.