Ralph Klein has gone and it is time to retire Ralph's World. Thanks to all of you who have supported this venture by contributing material and through your comments. It has been fun.

Should we get another blog underway? Let me know your thoughts by e-mailing me at johnnyslow@gmail.com.

John Slow
January 1, 2007

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

Interview or Infomercial 

If the answers provided by Ty Lund, Infrastructure Minister, to the Calgary Herald's questions regarding P3s in a recent article, P3s just a tool, are an example of the type of accountability and transparency promised by Premier Klein, then we, the Alberta taxpayers, who will be paying for the thirty year leases should be very concerned. Would you lease a car or rent a home without being privy to the details of the lease agreement? Ty Lund makes the unsubstantiated claim that 'the payments over a 30-year period are less than half of the amount that Alberta Infrastructure would have provided to develop a similar number of beds in the traditional way of developing and funding projects'. However Lund provides no actual dollar figures to back up his fantastic, half price claim. Because the government can claim that the specific details, the fine print, of each of its numerous proposed P3 contracts is confidential, Albertans will be on the hook for an undetermined amount of money over a period of thirty years without knowing either the amount of principle or interest they have to pay.

Before you consider unequivocally signing on the shifting bottom line of P3 proposals, consider some of the other promises the Klein government has made. Such as The only way taxes are going in Alberta is down. or Deregulation will lead to lower electricity costs because of competition in the market place. Then there's Public education is adequately funded. and the currently relevant No caps will be placed on highly competitive private insurance claims.

As politicians, particularly after they have left office, are not held fiscally liable for the promises they have made, it is you and I the taxpayer who have to foot the bill for their folly.

Harry B. Chase

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