Michael Dunkley: Spending $2.5M Is ‘Worrying’

December 17, 2019

“I am a keen supporter of golf, but to spend $2.5 million dollars in a very tight budget year, where taxpayers are struggling to meet commitments and no budget was allocated for the work it is very concerning and worrying,” Michael Dunkley said regarding the cost to prepare the Port Royal Golf Course for the Bermuda Championship.

Mr. Dunkley said, “On Friday in Parliament the Minister of Public Works answered questions I asked of him regarding the total costs to prepare the Port Royal Golf Course for the Bermuda Championship this year itemizing all expenses and contractors.

“It should be noted that when the tournament was announced months ago I asked questions in Parliament about the budget to prepare the PRGC for the event. In spite of asking on a couple of occasions prior to the event, the government did not provide any answers and were unable to provide the budget number, in spite of a commitment to do so.

“It was concerning to hear that over $2.5 million dollars was spent on work associated with preparing the course. $2.5 million dollars was spent without a budget being allocated. $2.5 million dollars which had to be taken from another budget head to carry out the preparation work.

“It is well known that I am a keen supporter of golf but to spend $2.5 million dollars in a very tight budget year, where taxpayers are struggling to meet commitments and no budget was allocated for the work it is very concerning and worrying.

“$2.5 million dollars is a significant amount of money and it is irresponsible to have no budget set for an event of this stature. It begs the question whether there was any control on how the money was spent. When you couple this with the fact that in answering questions the Minister stated there were finances charges or late fees it compounds the concerns even more.”

Speaking in the House on Friday, the Minister detailed 84 line items for the expenditure, spanning a range of services. We have asked the Government for a response and will update as able.

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Comments (42)

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  1. red rose says:

    I listened to this debate and what is not stated here is that the sand cost $600K

  2. Really? says:

    2.5 million is a pittance and nothing compared to what you pi$$ed away on America’s Cup, Morgan’s Point and the Airport Dunks! Why don’t you just go away and leave Bermuda to those of us who don’t give away our children’s future to finance elitist projects! You are yesterday’s news and the worst Premier ever in the history of Bermuda!

    • Mb says:

      I could agree with some of your points but 2.5m is a pittance?? Seriously?? That’s what wrong with the government they throw this kind of money around with no accountability or process yet how many new buses, teachers, and the like could we get for that money. So sorry, 2.5 m is never a pittance – maybe to you but not to the many struggling Bermudians
      And while I am at it, Bermuda would be truly down a toilet right now if not for AC … that single event did so much for Bermuda and tourism and the psyche of the people and inspiring our youth in sailing
      Morgan’s point, yes, oba messed up big time

    • kevin says:

      One difference
      the AC produced 300 million to our economy …you may think what you want but fact is fact
      Port Royal has now cost us an additional 2.5 after costing us 22 million only 8 years ago
      wake up plp voters you are suckers to the hype …but in the end it will only be us who will pay

    • Sandgrownan says:


    • saud says:

      “2.5 million is a pittance and nothing compared to what you pi$$ed away on America’s Cup, Morgan’s Point and the Airport Dunks! ”

      Seriously? Your racism is blinding you.

      The PLP pissed away over $1 BILLION….take a basic economics course, so you don’t look like such an ignorant fool.

    • sandgrownan says:

      Yawn, elitist? LOL…when those project are over there is….nothing….*crickets*

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      “leave Bermuda to those of us who don’t give away our children’s future”

      Umm, that would be the PLP Government between 2004 and 2012, when billions in current debt was incurred. By 2012 Bermuda could not even meet the interest payments on its current debt and had to borrow to pay interest on that debt!

    • Come Correct says:

      So I could literally sit here and outline every single reason why you are so wrong in the message you wrote, but I won’t because I don’t actually believe you’re and idiot.


      I’ve been wrong before and if you are just this stupid, spreading lies without fact, you need to unplug your computer with a metal fork.

  3. Joe Bloggs says:

    Oh, stop worrying about it. Bermuda has stopped paying into the sinking fund (saving for when we have to pay down on our billions of debt), so we have plenty of money to spread around.

  4. Dunn Juice says:

    Just look at the hospital, and the bus service. All under hanks watch.

  5. somuchless says:

    How could there be no budget? That’s right it’s the plp.

  6. Morning Glory Sunshine says:

    Dead right Dunk, no more than guaranteeing hotel financing or giving away a profit producing airport – all for few short term construction jobs in the hope of getting a few extra votes. Only difference is yours seem to have a few more zeros on the end. Oh and about that AC35 thing that Bloomberg suckered Grant on…

    • Things a Gwan says:

      Funny how you guys harp on airport but fail to acknowy two things.
      1) The PLP had introduced their own plan to build a new airport, but couldn’t figure out how it would be paid for.
      2) The Airport deal is no different than the one the PLP put in place with the hospital a few years beforem

    • Kathy says:


  7. toadinthehole says:

    what gets me is that there was never an approved budget so we have no way of knowing is this was value for money or not.
    I know the BTA is doing an ROI report, it will be interesting to see what it says

  8. Onion Juice says:

    About de amount you spent investigating Dr.Brown, and still investigating.

    • Come Correct says:

      The not “de”. Please respond that it’s “Bermudian” so I can shove it down your throat.

  9. Things a Gwan says:

    $2.5 ? How? I thought all they needed to do was put sand down !?

  10. Paul Revere says:

    MP. Dunkley, you cant have it both ways. Just like Americas Cup, there had to be initial expenses to get the event here and prepare the course for use. I am sure you would have like to brag, had AC organizers decided to stay and race in Bermuda for another few years, but it didn’t happen.
    It appears on face value that the PGA has committed to Bermuda for this event for the next few years, so the $2.5 million would be an investment in my books.
    Hit me up next year, in the event they spend another $2.5 million

  11. Truth says:

    Don’t you worry about it many rich black and white people flew in to attend the event. Now that they had a taste of Bda they will keep coming back. Now go run along and kick JetGATE Craig out because you and my PEOPLE already know he will not win the next election as the front man for the OBAubp.

    • Come Correct says:

      JETGATE Ewart strung you along like a hand-me-down puppet but none of you die-hard supporters even want to touch that subject. If you don’t want your face rubbed in &^!t, don’t ^%!t in the house.

  12. Honestly says:

    Let’s take a look at all of the bad deals you, the OBA, and the UBP have created. MESS! There is no reason to comment when you have agreed on foolishness!

    • sandgrownan says:

      Cruise Ship Terminal
      Port Royal Round #1
      Emissions Testing
      BHC scandal
      Failed hotel development in St. Georges
      Closing St. Georges Golf Course
      Running developers of Morgan’s Point in 1999
      Jet Gate #1
      Playboy Mansion…etc etc etc

      on and on it goes.. PLP failure and mismanagement.

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      Let’s not. When the PLP Government was first elected in 1998 Bermuda had no current debt. Bermuda now has current debt measured in the billions. That debt was created before 2012.

  13. Not much educational experience in finance…what was most worrying was: “My hands are tied. I can’t do anything”!
    Never truly cared about BORN BERMUDIANS.
    That was MOST WORRYING!!

    • sandgrownan says:

      What do you mean by BORN BERMUDIANS? You’re not, by any chance, playing the race card are you? I should tell Ms. Foggo.

    • saud says:

      You’re a crazy racist. go away.

      I’m a real Bermudian, what are you?

    • bluenose says:

      As always, no response to the concerns raised, just an attack on the messenger. You highlight the weakness of your position with every comment that you post.

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      “Never truly cared about BORN BERMUDIANS.”

      Well that certainly sounds ominous. I think you should return to where you came from and leave us Bermudians to ourselves.

    • Come Correct says:

      “I was just a cog in the wheel”
      Remember her? Might be difficult, nobody has seen or heard from her and her fancy hats since she’s been unemployable in the real world of finance.

  14. Onionwho says:

    De boat race, de boat race!

  15. Acegurl says:

    ‘Rotten onion’ there is none so blind as those who will not see’. From where you sit,, de boat race and the 2.5 million on PR
    are the same thing. However it will be interesting to see what the ROI is. Take your blinders off for 5 minutes and realize what the bigger question is, where did that money come from and why was there no budget? Surely these are much more concerning questions. Did you ever read the ROI on de boat race, de boat race?

  16. watching says:

    America’s cup, Airport, Morgan’s Point screwup…
    anything else Dunkley?
    You conveniently left out those blips on the financial radar.
    And yes as another blogger posted, what about the costs of this endless investigation into Dr Brown? No concerns about those costs?

    • Come Correct says:

      America’s cup more than quadrupled a profit, the airport hasn’t cost the tax payer a dime and if I was building a hotel under the oba to then have the plp re-elected with their track record, I would cut my losses and magically become broke too.

  17. Joe Bloggs says:

    Ok, let’s put the polytricks aside and recognise that the PGA Tour is likely to give Bermuda international television exposure. I understand that we are not on the first tier, but we will still get exposure on platforms such as The Golf Channel. That television exposure is worth investing $2.5 million on in my opinion.

  18. aceboy says:

    Golf is just as much a rich man sport as sailing. Hilarious to see some of you defending it. If it was an OBA event you would be blasting it as such.

  19. Bermudian ?? says:

    What is worrying , is the amount of times De Milkman said , as bermudians , we should all get behind and support this initiative ……. Iguess support means try anything , say anything , to try and discredit the organizers eh !!!!?!!
    Further , how quickly he forget . Isn’t this situation quite similar to the boat race fiasco ?? Numbers are nowhere close , and it seems the initial impact has a more profitable outcome and a more lasting ( $$ ) impact then the boat race !!! But your right Mr. Milk , this project puts you lame AC effort to shame …… guess Iwould bend over backwards if I were in yourshoes as well

    • sandgrownan says:

      Boat race fiasco? Are you stupid?

    • Bermuda says:

      You sound like one of the people who embarrassed us on a world stage. Your actions and words completely spoiled the chances of of AC coming back here and what is worse you scared away all of the extras that would have come with that. I believe what Mr. Dunkley is asking for is to see some accounting…..not a hard question but it seems tricky for the government to answer. Why is Bermuda’s premier course in need of so much work?

      • Paul Revere says:

        Because there are standards that need to be in place when hosting a PGA event.