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Results: 1 - 15 of 15
View Candice Bergen Profile
CPC (MB)
Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker.
Thank you, Mr. Stanton, for your presentation, and to all of you for the work that you've done.
I'm going to start by saying that—at least for me, and I think for most members of Parliament on this board—we don't want to see, three years from now, costs escalating yet again, there seeming to be no answers as to why, and the taxpayer looking back on us and saying that we said yes to this without really giving it thorough oversight.
When I see the differences, for example, in the square footage that we were given as the small, medium and large options, which are being changed today, the explanation sounds reasonable to me, but at the same time it's not something I'm an expert on. I'm concerned that the same thing could happen with the costs. When we're talking about a 38% escalation cost, if you tell us that's normal, we believe you.
I guess what I'm asking is this: Can the taxpayer, and those of us who are members of Parliament representing the taxpayer, be assured that there is somebody there and that there is a check there so that these costs won't escalate even further? It's just like the square footage. There's a reasonable answer as to why we were given different square footage amounts a while ago, as compared to today. Can we be assured that these costs will not escalate beyond this 38%?
In the private sector, there's somebody paying the bill; there's a business case being made, and that usually helps provide checks and balances. I absolutely understand that in this setting we don't have that, but I, for one, want to be able to look the taxpayer in the eye and say that we, as members of Parliament on BOIE, did everything we could to ensure that these costs didn't escalate and that there wasn't a blank cheque given.
I would like some assurances around that. I'll leave that as a comment, and maybe somebody wants to speak to it.
I do have a specific question. I think Mr. Wright referred to the excavation changes. Is there an update? I think the previous number was $48 million for that cost. I'm just wondering if that is changing, and whether we'll be given updates on that.
Second, in regard to the decision we're being asked to make, are we actually making a decision, or are we giving the minister our position? I know that recently the state broadcaster reported that BOIE recommended the $733-million option. Obviously, the CBC was in error, because we hadn't made that decision, but I just want to know that the minister hasn't been told that we've made a decision, and whether this is a recommendation or a decision point.
Those are two questions, and then I just have one more quick comment after that.
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View Candice Bergen Profile
CPC (MB)
Great, thank you.
Could someone just answer the question of whether we're giving the minister a recommendation here or actually making a decision? Has the decision been made by the minister, in effect?
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View Candice Bergen Profile
CPC (MB)
That's because you knew what we as MPs would be thinking. You knew we'd be asking about that too.
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View Candice Bergen Profile
CPC (MB)
Thanks for clarifying that.
Finally, through you, Mr. Stanton, perhaps you could reiterate this to the working group. When you were giving us your report, you were talking about the specific rooms in Centre Block that had been listed and how there would not be an undermining of their heritage value. I would like to reiterate that, as I recall from when we had this discussion, we really don't want those rooms changed. We'd like to be able to walk in and see that they are not changed at all.
I just want to reiterate that point. We really hope that so many of those rooms remain exactly the same outwardly as they were when we left just over a year ago. Thanks very much for the opportunity to provide that feedback.
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View Candice Bergen Profile
CPC (MB)
I think the one thing we want to make sure of, and I think we would probably all be in agreement, is that this committee doesn't get too overly bureaucratic where they are calling witnesses and satisfying curiosities. I'd like to make sure that we have some of those parameters. Maybe right now isn't the time to do it. Maybe we want to establish that we will have this subcommittee made up of the composition that you outlined. Or do we want to lay down a few more parameters now?
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View Candice Bergen Profile
CPC (MB)
The other question I had is this. How are we going to let the working group know, or the officials, or whoever needs to know, the list of “thou shalt not touch” rooms that we want to make sure are preserved?
What's the thought around that?
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View Candice Bergen Profile
CPC (MB)
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
I have a couple of things. First of all, I agree with much of what Mr. Holland said in terms of suggestions.
I'd like you to clarify your suggestion, Mr. Patrice. You mentioned that the group you were referring to needed to spend a minimum of two hours a week on this. Are you suggesting that there be a subgroup, away from this group? Perhaps you could repeat and clarify what you think would be a good solution to consultation.
Then I have another comment.
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View Candice Bergen Profile
CPC (MB)
This is just a suggestion, but would it be helpful, after we maybe have another meeting and have some more discussions, if BOIE set out some guiding principles? For example, I think we've heard continuously that we want the House of Commons and Centre Block to be preserved as close to what they were when we left them, or as close to the same point. If that is the guiding principle, that answers many, many questions.
Is that something that would be helpful? If we set out...and maybe you come back with some of those guiding principles. Within those parameters, the working group, however it is established, would in a sense have fewer decisions to make.
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View Candice Bergen Profile
CPC (MB)
Hypothetically, if that would be the guiding principle, then more floors probably wouldn't even be part of the equation.
I'm just throwing it out there as a suggestion. If we maybe establish some overall guiding principles and say, “Don't go out of these parameters”, then that would reduce some of the decision-making at the decision points.
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View Candice Bergen Profile
CPC (MB)
Yes, I agree. Maybe “guiding principles” is the wrong term. I think some specific parameters would.... When I look at some of the decisions that have to be made, they go all the way from keeping the House of Commons structure exactly as is to changing it drastically.
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View Candice Bergen Profile
CPC (MB)
If we say we don't want it to be changed drastically, for example, then many of those decision points will be taken off the table—
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View Candice Bergen Profile
CPC (MB)
Results: 1 - 15 of 15

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