Wednesday, February 01, 2012

RailGate Revisited: Doing The ProMedia's Job For Them...



Remember when we learned, back in 2009, that BC Liberal Party insider Mr. Patrick Kinsella was paid $6,000 per month for 49 straight months by BC Rail before, during and after the lease of BC Rail to CN Rail (ie. between 2001 and 2005)?

So, what, exactly was Mr. Kinsella doing to earn all that money, which turned out to be approximately $297,000 in aggregate?

Well, that was something that Mr. Kinsella's own company, 'The Progressive Group', soon made crystal clear in a press release:


March 12, 2009


VANCOUVER BC - The following is in response to questions raised in the BC Legislature today regarding the contractual relationship between BC Rail and Mr. Patrick Kinsella of the Vancouver-based Progressive Holdings.

Mr. Kinsella was engaged by BC Rail to assist in understanding and interpreting the Core Review Process as to its potential impact on the Corporation. BC Rail sought counsel on what implications, if any, might affect the Crown Corporation's operations and their strategic plan going forward.

The review process was the focus of the discussions between the Corporation and Progressive Holdings during the four-year term of the contract.

Progressive Holdings charged a monthly retainer for professional services including strategic communication counsel and interpretation of public policy initiatives.

Patrick Kinsella is the President of Progressive Holdings and the Chairman of The Progressive Group. His firm provides strategic counsel to clients on political and public policy initiatives in British Columbia.


It turns out that the fellow who did the most to uncover that working relationship between the good Mr. Kinsella and the BC Rail, Mr. Ian Reid, is now in possession of documents received as a result of a recent FOI request that today led him to write the following over at his blog:

...Over the next few days I’ll write about a shocking disclosure regarding the role of Patrick Kinsella (in the lease process)....


I don't know if it would be 'shocking' or not, but I, for one, sure hope that the documents most recently obtained by Mr. Reid might answer a question directed to then premier Gordon Campbell by Joy McPhail way, way back in May of 2003 at a time when, as was established much later (ie. in 2009), the good Mr. Kinsella was already ‘working’ for the not yet ‘leased’ BC Rail:

J. MacPhail: A longtime Liberal Party fundraiser is Patrick Kinsella. He is the lobbyist for CN. Has the Premier or any of his ministers met with Mr. Kinsella and representatives of CN?

In fact, if this question, which was asked in the legislature, could be answered using documents obtained by FOI request it would be most appropriate given Mr. Campbell’s response at the time:

Hon. G. Campbell: I don’t have an answer for that. As the member opposite knows, if she wants to know about specific meeting times with either myself or the minister, she can do that through freedom of information.


I wrote about the exchange between Ms. McPhail and Mr. Campbell some time ago because a commenter left the exchange, which is taken from Hansard, over at Paul Willcocks' place... And, despite what Gary Mason later wrote in a column in The Globe, I have never seen the question definitively answered one way or the other....One thing Mr. Mason did get on the record, for sure, was a non-denial denial from a CN spokethingy who he quoted as saying, "We have nothing to say."



Ian Reid said...

I hope I come close.
Thanks for the shout out,

Anonymous said...

The good mr. kinsella reminds me of those little fish that swim with sharks, always eating the leavings of the bigger ones. Never does any thing of value (or adds value) but manages to make a very good living non the less. What is the name in nature? Number one definition in my Webster is 1 : one frequenting the tables of the rich and earning welcome by flattery : SYCOPHANT

Anonymous said...

"The Progressive Group"? "Progressive Holdings"?

It's almost like a political party named the WereDefinitelyNotCrooks Party.

Methinks the right-winger doth protest too much.