JSS process must be fair and trans­par­ent – Foote

The Southern Gazette - - NEWS -

Ran­dom-Burin-St. Ge­orge’s MP Judy Foote called the re­cent $2.6 bil­lion com­mit­ment to build two new joint sup­port ships for the Cana­dian Navy wel­come news.

How­ever, she said the Con­ser­va­tive govern­ment must be held to its com­mit­ment that the process used in se­lect­ing the ship­yards to build the JSS will be fair and trans­par­ent.

Na­tional De­fence Min­is­ter Peter MacKay, in mak­ing the an­nounce­ment, said “ This is go­ing to be a boom time for ship­build­ing through­out At­lantic Canada.”

Mrs. Foote noted the min­is­ter is say­ing the At­lantic Cana­dian econ­omy is about to grow and pros­per be­cause of this an­nounce­ment.

“How­ever, just last month ru­mours cir­cu­lated govern­ment con­tracts would be awarded to two cen­tres of ex­cel­lence for ship­build­ing, and ac­cord­ing to the Vice Pres­i­dent of Washington Ma­rine Group, John Shaw, the govern­ment had al­ready de­cided where in the coun­try these two cen­tres would be lo­cated and un­for­tu­nately this prov­ince was not one of the lo­ca­tions.

“ Since then, Min­ster MacKay has said the ru­mours were not true bring­ing into ques­tion where Mr. Shaw would have got­ten such an idea, and rais­ing yet more ques­tions about the fed­eral govern­ment’s in­ten­tions with its new ship­build­ing strat­egy. You are left won­der­ing if the Con­ser­va­tive govern­ment will con­tinue its prac­tice of sole sourc­ing con­tracts like just hap­pened with the $16 bil­lion con­tract for F-35 fighter jets for the mil­i­tary.”

Mrs. Foote in­di­cated she placed on the or­der paper in the House of Com­mons June I ques­tions about the govern­ment’s new ship­build­ing strat­egy an­nounced in June by the Min­is­ters of Na­tional De­fence and Pub­lic Works and Govern­ment Ser­vices.

“Min­is­ters have 45 days to re­spond to such ques­tions. The ques­tions in­cluded a request for specifics on the new strat­egy, such as in­for­ma­tion on the se­lec­tion process and cri­te­ria for the es­tab­lish­ment of the two new Cen­tres of Ex­cel­lence in ship­build­ing.

“Fol­low­ing the re­quire­ments of the House of Com­mons, a re­sponse to my ques­tions should be forth­com­ing from the Min­is­ter of Na­tional De­fence by July 30.”

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