12 December 2012

Government Delaying Muskrat Falls Sanction: Kennedy #nlpoli

“What we have done,” natural resources minister Jerome Kennedy told the House of Assembly on Tuesday, “[is] we have slowed down the process in terms of the sanction.”

Kennedy offered no explanation why.

He made the comment as part of an answer to questions from Opposition leader Dwight Ball about how much the provincial government and Nalcor had spent on the Muskrat Falls project in November.

Ball noted that the provincial government had spent $35 million in September and, as Kennedy corrected, $38 million in November

I can tell the member opposite that no further monies have been released from my department until a decision on sanction is made.

Lawyers use words every day.

Lawyers like to be precise in the words they use.

That’s why it is odd when lawyers say things that mix up verb tenses in a single sentence.  No further monies “have been released”  - past tense – “until a decision is made”, that is, sometime in the future.

That doesn’t make any sense.

What’s more peculiar that Kennedy’s verb tenses is that the provincial government has been saying all along that Muskrat Falls will be sanctioned before Christmas.  The loan guarantee is in place, as we heard already.  Everything is in place except for a couple of pieces of legislation that will pass easily through the House. 

In fact, this looked like so much of a done deal that SRBP just passed on the local scuttlebutt a couple of weeks ago around the time of the loan guarantee announcement.  Sanctioned already was the word floating around town.

The provincial government crowd publicly denied they’d already sanctioned the deal. And now we find out that the provincial government has delayed the sanction until – presumably – some time after Christmas.