FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 21st, 2012
QUEEN’S PARK – Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Toby Barrett is calling for immediate government action after an Auditor General report highlighting lack of oversight, excessive waste and mismanagement at the disgraced air ambulance agency – ORNGE.
“For starters we in the Official Opposition feel someone in government should be take responsibility – at the very least today’s revelations underline the need for the Minister’s resignation,” Barrett began. “But, further than that, we need government to allow the Select Committee that was approved last night to press further into the wide range of impacts government’s lack of oversight has had – specifically on the people of Ontario.”
Barrett noted that with the motion from Opposition Transportation Critic MPP Frank Klees’ for a Select Committee receiving approval last night – PC and NDP members joining to support the motion 53-41 against voters in the government ranks – work should begin as soon as possible to uncover the impacts outside of the Auditor General’s parameter.
“The Auditor General followed the money, the police follow the crime. We have to go beyond the numbers and alleged criminal activity,” Barrett said. “We need to talk to the experts – medical and safety experts – who best know the impacts on patients that ORNGE was originally mandated to serve.”
Today’s scathing report from Auditor General Jim McCarter found Health Minister Deb Matthews and the McGuinty Liberals completely failed their duty to provide proper oversight of an organization receiving more than $700 million taxpayer dollars since 2006.
MPP Barrett notes that while the Public Accounts Committee – which he serves on as Vice Chair – will be holding hearings and calling on witnesses to provide testimony on ORNGE concerns uncovered in the Auditor General report, a Select Committee is required to go further.
Public Accounts consideration of the Auditor General report on ORNGE begins next Wednesday, March 28th.
For more information, please contact MPP Toby Barrett at: (416) 325-8404,
(519) 428-0446 or 1-800-903-8629