Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The National Park Shuffle

Whenever the federal government says "budget deficit's are no excuse for not spending on X" you should probably be at least a little suspicious. Naturally, I was, but I'm always suspicious so that probably doesn't mean much.
At issue is $100 million in Rouge Valley land Ottawa wants to transform into a new national park, but is being stymied by the cash-strapped province.

“I would hope that in the days and weeks ahead the Ontario government will come to its senses and appreciate what’s at risk here if they try to hold up the project,” said Kent, who is locked in a literal turf war with provincial Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Bob Chiarelli.

“This proposal — or gambit if you will, because I really think it is a long shot — reverses a couple of decades of Ontario government policy. It’s simply not the way we build national parks,” said the federal minister, who wants the land transferred by September.
The irony of these statements coming at the same time as the #deathofevidence protest and numerous other federal cuts being made aside, it's an interesting contrast when compared with this.

Parks Canada to privatize operations of hot springs, May 2012
Parks Canada confirmed plans Tuesday to privatize business operations at hot springs in Radium, B.C., and Jasper and Banff, Alb.

This comes one day after the federal government announced
staffing cuts in national parks across the country.
It goes on to say:
The private operators will be allowed to make the call on admission fees and hours.
I see, so for an existing, popular, well established National Park there certainly isn't enough money. We need to privatize those. However, when it comes to as yet to be established national parks, there is plenty of federal money and cash strapped provinces should just give the federal government whatever they want because to do otherwise is "simply not the way we build national parks". Right.

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Richard Fantin is a self-taught software developer who has mostly throughout his career focused on financial applications and high frequency trading. He currently works for CenturyLink

Nazayh Zanidean is a Project Coordinator for a mid-sized construction contractor in Calgary, Alberta. He enjoys writing as a hobby on topics that include foreign policy, international human rights, security and systemic media bias.

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