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Ontario Hansard - 20-November2013

PAN AM GAMES


Mr. Steve Clark: My question is for the minister responsible for the Pan Am Games. Minister, I'm not sure if you've played sports, but I want to try to explain something to you. Before you play the game, you need to know and have some rules. Otherwise, you have people running around not knowing what to do, which pretty well describes mayhem, which is how you have handled the Pan Am Games so far. It's really shameful, but it's really no surprise to learn that the budget is now over $2 billion. That's what happens, Minister, when you have no rules and no plan.

Minister, you wouldn't run a peewee hockey practice without any rules. Why do you think it's acceptable to do so for a $2-billion international sporting event like the Pan Am Games?

Interjections.


The Speaker (Hon. Dave Levac): Be seated, please.

Minister.


Hon. Michael Chan: Speaker, another ridiculous, rubbish allegation.

Let me be clear one more time about those numbers. Funding of the athletes' village has always been clear, as part of Ontario's host jurisdiction responsibilities and budget. It was stated in the 2009 bid book-

Interjection.


The Speaker (Hon. Dave Levac): The member from Durham, come to order.

Hon. Michael Chan: -2015 games budget of $1.4 billion. It was announced again April 26, 2009, by former Minister George Smitherman when the site was unveiled at the West Don Lands.

As recently as our 2013 budget, it was reaffirmed that the athletes' village is separate from our $500-million contribution to the organizing committee's budget. The investments in the Pan Am athletes' village have been in plain sight for over-


The Speaker (Hon. Dave Levac): Thank you.

Hon. Michael Chan: -years.

Interjections.


The Speaker (Hon. Dave Levac): Be seated, please. Thank you.

Supplementary?


Mr. Steve Clark: Back to the minister-I guess I learned something today: He's a pretty good dodge ball player.

Minister, you've spent two years evading our basic questions, like what it's going to cost to provide security for these games. Now we know why: The budget is completely out of control. It's more than double the $1.4 billion you've been telling us, and we're still counting.

This is no longer about you and mismanagement. It's clear that you're in over your head. You're not up to the job. So I'm going to ask you, Minister: Can you tell Ontarians the cost of security for these games? If you can't, will you resign and give the job to somebody else who can start giving us those answers?


The Speaker (Hon. Dave Levac): Be seated, please. Thank you.

Minister.


Hon. Michael Chan: Speaker, security is paramount. We will not take any risks with the safety of our citizens.

It is truly unfortunate that the member opposite cannot comprehend the fact that where we are in the planning stages now is completely normal. The security costs are continuously evolving as the game plan is evolving.

We have 10,000 athletes and coaches who will be visiting our province. We have 250,000 visitors who will be visiting our province. We have 14 host municipalities and multiple venues to coordinate and come to agreement with. The games are an unprecedented event in our province. These are the largest games-in 80 years-ever hosted by Ontario.

The games are well planned, and we are on the right track.

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