Mr. Speaker, I rise this evening to discuss a question that I asked on November 5. The question was about a Royal LePage contract which was announced on November 2 by the Minister of Public Works.
The contract is for relocating staff with the RCMP, national defence and the Government of Canada. This contract was to replace the contract which was awarded in 2002 and later cancelled.
The new contract is over a five year period and is worth just $154 million which an 85% reduction from the 2002 contract which was worth approximately $1 billion, as announced by the Minister of Public Works on December 19, 2002. I hardly believe that Royal LePage would take an 85% cut in its fees to do the same work that the previous contract involved.
Since I asked my original question, I have discovered that the contract is essentially for consulting and management fees and that additional contracts will have to be signed for flow-through costs for third party suppliers, such as realtors, lawyers and home inspectors. Let me state this again. This new contract, which the government announced with great fanfare, is only for the management of the contract. It is not for the whole contract for the relocation of the employees of the federal government.
Some would say that the minister is misleading Parliament with his spin. The minister has claimed that the contract was open and transparent. However, when I asked him to table the documents relating to the contract, he would not do it. Why is that? Perhaps, Mr. Speaker, you can get me the answer.
If we add up the moves, last year the government moved over 14,700 employees. Over a five year period, that total adds up to over 73,800 moves. If the government continues to claim that this contract is the one and only, can it provide any documentation on how it is planning to hire lawyers, realtors, movers, house appraisers and only pay a total $2,087 per move? I am sure Canadians would love to be able to move across Canada for only $2,000.
Just so the House understands how I came upon the figure of $2,087 per move, I will explain that the total contract, just over $154 million divided by the 73,800 moves equals $2,087.
It is plain and simple, Royal LePage, like any private corporation, is in business to make a profit. The way that the minister is trying to spin this contract, Royal LePage would go bankrupt very quickly. I do not believe that Royal LePage would sign a contract that would put the company at risk.
Is the minister willing to table in the House all the documentation relating to this contract?