BCBC: deal closed, public excluded

Sometimes we at Dogwood Initiative feel we could spend our days doing nothing but tracking secret privatization projects. From subtler schemes like the attempt to turn Victoria’s Crystal Garden Conservation Centre into a tacky tourist attraction (it seems the BC government and its developer friends feel we need something to replace the wax museum when it’s slated to close), to the sell-off of BC Hydro bit by bit, to the decreased service and increased prices for BC Ferries (tried parking at a terminal lately?), there’s too much to keep track of.

The government, in its benevolence, has decided to simplify things for us, by not telling us what they are doing.

The British Columbia Building Corporation is a case study in secrecy. True, the organization is, for most British Columbians, more obscure than the Ferries or Hydro. But it is an important organization, managing, to quote its website, “cost-effective accommodation[s] for the provincialpublic sector, and [managing] the stewardship of those properties to meet the best interests of the taxpayers.” It is also responsible for initiatives like Green Buildings BC.

We wrote more than three months ago about pretty convincing rumours that final negotiations were under way for the sale of BCBC. In late May we learned that the sale has been completed, to a Baltimore company.

Has the government told the public about this sale? Will the sale be true to BCBC’s mandate to “meet the best interests of taxpayers.” You know the answer to the first question. We can only speculate about the answer to the second.

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