Today’s letters: Not everyone is a fan of Ottawa’s Trillium Line deal
City manager Steve Kanellakos says that SNC-Lavalin created confidence in the company’s bid to build the Trillium Line extension. It’s too bad that the bureaucrats at city hall don’t read the Financial Post section of the Citizen.
Tuesday, you reported the opinion of the company’s biggest shareholder, Michael Sabia, CEO, Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec: “SNC-Lavalin Group Inc. needs a complete change of culture to … turn its business around.”
This business leader does not appear to share the confidence of Mr. Kanellakos. I wonder which one is correct.
We’re running transit like the Ottawa Senators
City manager Steve Kanellakos’s recent claim that the city landed the “best deal” when council approved a construction contract with SNC-Lavalin to expand the O-Train Trillium Line appears to emphasize the fact it was the lowest-priced bid (even though it did not meet the technical threshold).
This assertion is analogous to going the cheaper route pursued by sports teams such as the Blue Jays and Ottawa Senators in recent years. They have cut costs by dealing their best players and getting little in return except lower-cost, mediocre talent. Yes, they still field a team but the overall product quality suffers.
The difference is that the pro-sports industry is a private enterprise designed to provide entertainment (which people can choose not to patronize) whereas with our transit system, people’s safety and lives are ultimately (literally) at stake and this public project is being funded by taxpayer money.
Kris Nanda, Ottawa
SNC-Lavalin keeps getting chances
SNC-Lavalin appears to be peculiarly blessed for so errant a company, as so many at three levels of government appear hell-bent on ensuring its financial health, legal welfare and security, often with taxpayer dollars.
It’s apparently official: Unrepentant sinners do get a second chance … and a third … and a…..
Frank A. Pelaschuk, Alexandria
Better ways to run long-term care
Re: Funding cuts jeopardize care homes, July 23.
Once again, the vulnerable older adults living in our long-term care homes will be penalized by funding cuts. Many residents continue to be frustrated and bored, which often results in aggressive incidents. Staff continue to be exhausted, frustrated and overworked. After 40 years of tweaking and millions spent, the system remains broken.
Funding cuts aren’t the answer. Transforming the way care is delivered and creating a new culture of care with innovative models that already exist is a solution. These innovative models are being used in several communities in the province.
Yes, there is upfront investment but there are projections that the result is cost-neutral. The result? Fewer aggressive incidents, decreased medication use, decreased food waste and a decrease in staff sick days. These models create an atmosphere that is more home-like and provide a sense of community for residents, staff and families. Wouldn’t you want this kind of transformative care for your family member?
The new minister of Long-term Care, Merrilee Fullerton, has said that “long-term care is a priority for this government.” CARP Ottawa urges her to include a study of these innovative models of care before making any future decisions regarding cuts.
Rick Baker, President, CARP Ottawa
Fix 24 Sussex before the Cháteau Laurier
Never mind nationalizing the Château Laurier; what a ridiculous idea. Let’s concentrate on fixing 24 Sussex Drive, so our prime ministers have a decent place to live that we can all be proud of.
As for the château, I fail to understand why is it so hard for modern architects to duplicate the façade of the hotel for the outside walls of the extension. Extending the hotel is understandable, but inability to copy the exterior is not.
Nona Nalley, Orléans