PLP To Hold Town Hall Meeting: Airport Project

August 18, 2015

The PLP will be hosting a Town Hall Meeting entitled “The Privatisation of Bermuda’s Airport” at 7.00pm on Thursday, August 20th at Warwick Workmen’s Club.

“During yesterday’s session of Parliament, Minister Bob Richards once again refused to discuss the independent Deloitte report on the Airport,” a PLP spokesperson said.

“Therefore, the Progressive Labour Party invites all concerned citizens to a Town Hall Meeting on “The Privatisation of Bermuda’s Airport” to be held on Thursday, August 20th at 7:00pm at Warwick Workmen’s Club.

“The featured panelists will be Deputy Leader & Shadow Finance Minister, Mr. E. David Burt, and Shadow Transport Minister, Mr. W. Lawrence Scott. The panelists will review the independent Deloitte report which highlighted numerous deficiencies in the OBA’s approach to this important project and also review the PLP’s alternate vision for the airport redevelopment that will keep the airport in public hands.

“In July the OBA were required by the UK Government to do the following: The United Kingdom Government and the Government of Bermuda must agree on what measures are required to address the deficiencies that are identified by Deloitte in their assessment report[s]. The Government of Bermuda must publish a written and evidence-based assurance that the required measures have been taken, before the Contract can be concluded.

Airport Town Hall Meeting - August 20th

“These conditions make it clear that the OBA government must address the numerous deficiencies that were identified by Deloitte prior to moving forward with the airport redevelopment project. Despite this, Minister Richards is determined to lock Bermuda into a 35 year agreement without conducting the required steps to ensure value for money.

“It is critical that the largest capital project in Bermuda’s history is executed correctly. We as a country cannot afford to get this wrong, especially as the OBA is planning on giving Aecon the rights to control our air terminal for the next 35 years.

“From the outset of this project, we have urged the Government to put the airport project out to competitive tender to ensure that Bermuda gets the best deal possible.

“Further, we agree with the independent Deloitte report which states that the Government must use a “Public Sector Comparator” to ensure that the public-private partnership [PPP] that they have agreed to makes the most long-term economic sense for Bermuda.

“We encourage all taxpayers to read the independent Deloitte report which is available on www.parliament.bm [or here tiny.cc/aiportreport] , as it echoes many of the concerns raised by the Progressive Labour Party since the OBA announced that they had agreed a sole-sourced Public Private Partnership to build a new airport terminal.

“We can all agree that this topic is one that should concern all of us. Therefore, we invite and encourage everyone to come out to this important meeting to learn about the independent Deloitte report and to hear the PLP’s alternate vision for the redevelopment of the airport.”

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  1. watching says:

    Why is Bob so resistant to discussing the Deloitte report?

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      It wasn’t on the cards, this was a early Parliment session with the specific purpose. Course the PLP has a specific purpose to derail and delay as much progress as possible, so of course they would throw a hissy about not addressing something that wasn’t on the schedule to address. Even further to the fact that it has been discussed to no end already, but that is what the PLP want the OBA to do, discuss, discuss, discuss and waste time to get nothing done till the next election, so they can complain that the OBA got nothing done.

      • ReALLyBettty says:

        The Opposition role is to hold the Government accountable. To ensure that any Capital project is conducted with the correct regulations and with in the laws.

        This Opposition is not a sleeping one, but a live kicking Opposition. ,……The Opposition is paid by the Taxpayers to perform……………It is working hard on behalf of the people………….If you want a silence Opposition, than we need to change from the Westminster system of Government.

        If down the road something does not go right, folks can not say the Opposition failed to hold the Government Account, or why did someone on the government benches pick up on that or that………….I want an Active Opposition, not a sleeping Opposition…………….

        Keep looking out, as this Active Opposition works on behalf of the people……….They should examine any project carefully and keep the people of Bermuda informed.

        • ReALLyBettty says:

          The Brilliance of Burt and Scott, two young intelligent young men, working on behalf of their country. Good to see our young men acting doing something to make a difference. Keep pushing on…………….

          • Ringmaster says:

            Blindfaithfullness at its best.

          • Build a Better Bermuda says:

            If they are so brilliant, why are they harping on about the airport being privatized by this deal, when it is already privatized, and was done so under the PLP watch. If they are so brilliant, why are they still harping on about us losing $1b over the next 30 years, when the truth is that if we financed it our selves, we would be out over a $1b over the next 35 years. When the truth is that we would never see a $1b out of any airport over the next 35 years regardless of what is done because any airport comes with things like expenditures. The only thing they are brilliant is spinning truths to lies and getting their blind faithful to swallow it like the gospel truth.
            I don’t trust either party, but history and present day shows that the PLP has lied to all Bermudians more than the OBA and that Minister Richards probably has the best head to manage our government finances with more integrity than anyone the PLP can muster. After all, how can I trust someone who seems to still be unable to do the basic calculation to determine the value of something by simply deducting expenditure from revenue.

        • jt says:

          “…. a sustained program of information, disinformation and criticism must be considered acceptable”

    • serengeti says:

      Myth. There was a news article August 13 where he answered questions about the Deloitte report. Can’t help it of you’re unable to keep up with what’s in the media.

  2. Terry says:

    Warwick Workmen’s Club?

    More rubbish.

    Concerned citizens………..

    The premises holds a few parking spaces (nice place).

    City Hall makes more sense but then you would need a permit.

    Hell. Why not Horseshoe Bay can accommodate the 1000′s that will attend.

    Next week?

    Corporation and OBA will be taken to court because there are not enough double parking places on Qween Streat for KFC.

    • watching says:

      There is a large field adjacent to Warwick Workmen’s Club that allows for parking many cars.

      • Maddog says:

        He must be white.. He probably don’t even know we’re Warwick Workmen club!!!!

      • Terry says:

        Yeah so what.
        Lots of street parking in Hamilton at that time.
        And if they are really that attendant they will ‘Park and Walk’.
        Get it?

        • mixitup says:

          Funny how you can tell huh? lol Not to mention Terry’s racist undertones..sad case.

        • Northshore says:

          There it is Terry, when they have nothing else to say and feel like they have lost, its the race thing. So predictable!

          • mixitup says:

            Yes there it is for sure.. When someone points out a racist, they are racist..lol Is this you all’s new ‘way out?’ well it doesn’t work with me.

  3. jt says:

    A commitment to address the DandT report has been publicly made.

  4. hmmm says:

    It is a PPP not privatization. Already the PLP with the nonsense.

    PLP alternative proposal….give me a break, unachievable, over budget, needs finance from the Govt…(don’t have that remember PLP)

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      Except the airport is already privatized, everything except for airport management. Who cleans the place, who provides security, who manages baggage handling, who manages plane refuelling, who manages the ground crews… all subcontracted out… I understand that even the air traffic controllers are subcontracted. So guess what, the airport is already privatized, and it was done under the PLP.

    • cs says:

      PLP – As a concerned citizen please add the following to the agenda:
      1. Port Royal Auditor General Report
      2. Bda Housing Auditor General Report
      3. Corp of Hamilton Ombudsman Report

      Thank you.

      • mixitup says:

        Ahh when did you become a concerned citizen? the 70′s? 80′s? 90′s? If so, your list should be much longer than that.

        • gwan says:

          70′s 80′s and 90′s didn’t leave us in debt .

          • ABS says:

            you are so correct the “forty thieves” left the kitty well stocked

        • Build a Better Bermuda says:

          We left those decades with higher graduation rates from our public schools and no debt. While our education system was suffering decline toward the later under the UBP, it was the PLP that suffered it to ruination through neglect a good decade into their administration. It was also the PLP who implemented policies that abused our International Business sector and castrated our competitiveness in that global market.

  5. NCM says:

    Let me guess – audience members will be subjected to a constant stream of misinformation, disinformation and alarmist falsehoods all in an attempt to derail this project. If the St. George’s Hotel and other hotel projects, new airport, America’s Cup etc. all go ahead and the economy rebounds (of which there are already signs) then the opposition have less chance of getting elected. Power at any cost – even if you continue to hurt the very Bermudians you claim to represent. I, for one, am looking forward to getting on and off planes without being rained on or being hit with that hot, wet blanket of humidity and heat and having to walk across the hot tarmac into a crumbling, dilapidated building. Our airport is a national embarrassment. Clearly rather than being part of the solution the opposition are determined to be part of the problem. Long may they remain in opposition.

  6. imported fisher says:

    Shouldve done this for the port royal project, Berkeley tcd and on and on. This is getting a little boring now.
    Goin get a fish sandwich.

    • inna says:

      Things weren’t “tight” back then unfortunately. Money was thrown around like candy!

    • watching says:

      Why didn’t the OBA or UBP (whoever they were at the time) do this?

  7. Please says:

    HM Loyal Opposition, could you please hold a town hall meeting on the party’s plans to reduce Bermuda’s deficit/debt overhang.

    Things have been very quiet on this front–and the young voters of this country would like to hear your position on this as it will be our burden to carry going forward and we will need to know which party has the best plan to help us tackle it.

    So lawsuits and allegations of corrruption,are important but for us–its not the driver of our future prosperity.

    Please let us know your thoughts.

    Have a blessed day!

  8. Buzby says:

    Well I don’t agree that we need an airport, but these clowns wanted one right up until they weren’t to be the ones to build it. They are the last ones I want defending my side because they are not on anybody’s side but their own.

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      Been through that airport, front and back… believe me when I say we need a new one. Our current one is on borrowed time

  9. Kangoocar says:

    Brace Yourselves everyone for the couple of more hours of miss information that is about to flood BDA on Thursday night by the plp ( progressive lying party )

  10. Not exactly says:

    Can’t wait to hear Burt’s “alternate vision”. I can almost guarantee that it will be a bunch of buzzword BS just like his Vision 2025 for the economy.

  11. Alvin Williams says:

    The OBA government will not dare hold a public meeting meeting on this issue; not unless they find a way to hide their public relations speeches while they stand in front of the people.

    • jt says:

      Seychelles calling.

    • hmmm says:

      They did one in April (from a quick search).

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      They got nothing to report, everybody already knows what there is to know at this point. A town hall meeting would be pointless. If you want to get your misinformation from the PLP, that is your choice, but otherwise, it isn’t that hard to get actual information. We need a new airport, our current one is on borrowed time; only one company has come forward with a proposal to build one without costing the government; the UK has been satisfied with the due diligence to this point; the government, thanks to the Deloitte report, knows what deficiencies still need to be addressed, some of which can only be addressed during the actual contract negotiations; the current airport is already effectively privatized, done during the PLP years; we haven’t yet begun the actual build to design contract… I’d consider going, except that I already know this is going to be just like every other meeting they have held, a platform to disseminate further misinformation in an emotive arena so that reason cannot surface to see what is actually going on.

    • Yahoo says:

      The OBA held a Town Hall on this very subject less than six months ago. Poor Alvin, spouting gibberish yet again.

      http://bernews.com/2015/04/videos-minister-bob-richards-on-airport-plans/

  12. Just a matter of time says:

    The OBA have rarely addressed the people in this fashion (Town Halls) ever since their Pier 6 Town Hall embarrassment for Public Service Reform. The Finance Minister got thrown under the bus while his colleagues just sat there in silence. An unforgettable moment. They got scared off and as a result they continue to remain out of touch to the people and prefer instead to operate in a draconian way pushing special bills left and right under our noses to fulfill their non Bdian agenda. Transparency be damned.

    • Trulytruly says:

      Well I went to one in April. Aunt Peggy was there too trying to behave herself.

    • Build a Better Bermuda says:

      I think that it would be more of a case that if they were, it would spiral to pointlessness as there would no doubt be some PLP plants in the crowd to try and drag it into an emotive arguement to lose any message that might be trying to get across. They already have had several Town Halls on the matter anyway, the only reason to hold another would be to talk about that the UK has granted us a Letter of Entrustment to proceed with negotiations. The only real next reason for the government to hold a town hall on the airport would be to inform us of the completion of the MoU and that they were now progressing with the next stage of contract negotiations regarding the design build details.

  13. Terry says:

    Your an ass Alvin.

    Why should they.
    They know what they are doing.

    Guess what. Beyoncé is not attending any OBA meeting.

  14. navin johnson says:

    a Town Hall meeting? my goodness they have not had a town hall meeting for what? a week? same people ,same negativity…tiring

  15. Triangle Drifter says:

    A new terminal was on the PLPs ‘gonna do’ list of promises never kept from some years ago, along with a much needed causeway replacement.

    What happened? There were no objections back then. So, what is the problem now?

    With the exception of Customs & Imigration the whole thing has been privatised for quite some time. Bermuda Customs & Imigration will be in the new terminal along with all those Bermuda companies with Bermuda employees who ran the old terminal.

    What part of “We are broke” do the PLP not understand? We are so far in a financial hole, thanks to PLP fiscal imeptness that our credit rating sucks like Greece. Having somebody take the risk to build a new terminal in return for rents etc. paid by the services within that building for a set period of time is not perfect but it is the best we will get given our financial status.

  16. Options says:

    The PLP’s plan is to create an Airport Authority who they state can seek ‘independent financing’ for the development. Or in other words another quango backed by the ‘full faith and credit’ of the BDA Govt (i.e taxpayers).

    But the PLP say that current airport revenues cannot sustain a $250mn loan so will have to seek funds from other sources. On top of that they say that causeway financing would also be included in the deal.

    To borrow that amount of funds, based on current airport profitability levels, will require the airport to be put up as collateral with any shortfall covered by the taxpayer if need be I imagine. That didn’t work so well with the Par-la-Ville parking lot, which is now owned by a Mexican firm.

    Which means that the debt will essentially appear on the BDA Govt balance sheet (as the new quangos would be backed by the BDA Govt) as it has done with the hospital (which is the main driver behind the recent increases in our health insurance premiums).

    The other option is to raise further taxes on airport operations to finance the airport and causeway redevelopments proposed.

    It was noted the other day in the House that the cost estimated during the PLP’s reign, for the airport alone, was $455mn by one local architect firm while another overseas consultant produced a figure of just under $1bn.

    Thus the financing would be in the form of a loan (more debt) that would extend into much longer than 35 years that CCC would have operational control. Especially if the plan is to include the causeway redevelopment. And let’s not forget the obligatory ‘cost overruns’ that will be incurred with such a large project.

    I just don’t see how any lender would be more than willing to extend that type of loan to an island drowning in debt and to an entity (airport operations) that recorded a loss in the most recent financial year. Taxes will have to be increased to facilitate such a large borrowing.

    However, I agree with the need to remedy the deficiencies highlighted by Deloitte before embarking on this project and I am equally glad that they are working with the UK Govt to sort these matters out.

    I wish that the previous Government sought such assistance when issuing non-tendered contracts (Port Royal, Dockyard Pier etc) that resulted in hundreds of millions in overruns that cost each one of us dearly.

    Many airport operations have been privatized over the years, including maintenance and the private jet terminal, on top of the outsourcing of functions such as the TCD testing and recycling pick-up etc. At least with this proposed deal the actual asset remains under public control.

  17. Just a matter of time says:

    This entire project needs to be stopped now and a rethink needs to take place. I find it incredible to believe that CCC is the one and only way to do this. The only way? But we would never know if there is another way because our arrogant Minister of Finance who knows all, has made no effort to dig deep and find other funding solutions. Just putting all our eggs in this gift of a basket to CCC who are licking their chops and have already budgeted their own staff bonuses and wealth creation outside of Bermuda in this great cash giveaway courtesy of the Bermuda Govt. Unbelievable!

    • Hoolieh says:

      OBVIOUS!

      We’re not stupid! Let’s lay the cards on the table for those who are not able to guess what they are!

      Stopping this project (BTW, which was initiated under the PLP) means significantly less jobs, as promised by the OBA.

      Letting it go through means many many jobs, i.e. OBA meets their jobs growth promise, and therefore increased odds they (OBA) can win the next election.

      Duh! A no-brainer!

      Now let’s argue over the real issue here!

      Smith’s

  18. Jurist says:

    Are they going to talk about Port Royal,Grand Atlantic or Dame Lois Building projects?

  19. ABS says:

    I wouldn’t exactly call the selected location a “Town Hall” rather than a selected “stronghold” site that will only enable the pop to distort more untruths.

    • PBanks says:

      Isn’t Pettingil the MP for the constituency where Warwick Workmen’s is located?

  20. Bullseye says:

    It kind of sounds like his rival Bob Richards doesnt it?

  21. Northshore says:

    The bar will make money!!

  22. Starting Point says:

    Could we have the link to the PLP option for the airport please so we can review and come with prepared questions?

    or is the PLP option similar to Donald Trump? We will build a great airport, a world class airport, i am not going to tell you how we will do it but it will be world class, we might even have Mexico pay for it!

    actually the more i think about it the more the PLP remind me of the Donald lol. he should speak at their banquet.

  23. Just a matter of time says:

    @Hoolieh. I said stop and and do a rethink. I am not against a capital project that means jobs. I am against one that is no bid without transparency.

  24. The arrivals area in the new private je facility smells like a cess pit and the parking area for aircraft is way too small. Really hope that this is not a sign of things to come. TRASH

  25. Alcohol is served there….