Monday, October 05, 2009


BC Rail Case "Decider" is now Deputy Premier

Allan Seckel replaces Jessica McDonald as Premier Gordon Campbell's deputy minister

By Charlie Smith - Oct. 5, 2009

Premier Gordon Campbell has appointed Allan Seckel as the head of the B.C. Public Service.

Seckel, who has been deputy attorney general since 2003, replaces Jessica McDonald. According to a B.C. government news release, she "will move on to future career opportunities".

With this promotion, Seckel becomes deputy minister to the premier.

Seckel was a partner for many years in the downtown Vancouver office of Russell & Dumoulin, later known as Fasken Martineau, when he was appointed deputy to then-attorney general Geoff Plant. Plant previously worked at the same law firm.

In recent years, Seckel has landed in the news as the person who decided which cabinet documents relating to B.C. Rail should be deemed confidential in the criminal trial of David Basi, Bob Virk, and Aneal Basi.

On May 8, 2007, Campbell told the legislature that he would play no role in that decision, saying Seckel would work directly with the special prosecutor. (Bill Berardino, the special prosecutor in the Basi-Virk case, also worked at Russell & Dumoulin for many years.)

"It would be inappropriate for me to determine, prior to those decisions being made, what they should be or to try and characterize them in any manner whatsoever, so I won't do that," Campbell said at the time.

Click HERE for the full column.


Gordon Campbell's top deputy leaving government

By Jonathan Fowlie
Vancouver Sun - Oct 5, 2009

VICTORIA -- Jessica McDonald, head of B.C.'s public service and deputy minister to Premier Gordon Campbell, is leaving government, she announced Monday.

A key member of Campbell's administration, McDonald has overseen several high-profile programs, including a recent round of layoffs within the public service.

McDonald has been Campbell's key deputy since 2005, and was the first women to ever lead B.C.'s public service.

She does not currently have another job in place.

The change comes amidst a turbulent period for Campbell's Liberal government, which has dropped in the polls since the last election over issues such as the snap decision to adopt a harmonized sales tax. {Snip} ...

Click HERE for the full report including McDonald's farewell letter.

Premier Campbell's senior deputy minister quits - no reason given

Bill Tieleman - Oct. 5, 2009

Read Bill's column HERE.

[I can't help wondering if there are some British Columbians who will speak freely after they are cut loose from their jobs with the Campbell Government. - BC Mary.]


Equal pay for equal work?

Sean Holman writes in Public Eye Online today:

In a scrum earlier today, Gordon Campbell confirmed his new deputy minister Allan Seckel will be making $265,500 - over $30,000 more than Jessica McDonald earned doing the same job during fiscal 2008/09. The premier also told reporters Ms. McDonald had approach[ed] him about leaving the civil service prior to the election.

Under the present compensation framework for top bureaucrats, Mr. Seckel could get a bonus of up to 10 percent, increasing his salary to $295,000. The maximum payable salary for the premier's deputy minister is $348,600.

To watch Gordo's lips moving, check HERE for Public Eye Online video.


Vaughn Palmer, unctious beyond belief, is HERE.


"...Mr. Hunter reported that effective January 1, 2009, the current BC statutes and
regulations will be available online and free of charge through the Queen’s Printer
and CanLII websites. He applauded the work of many people over several years that
led to this very positive development for the BC public, acknowledging particularly
Deputy Attorney General Allan Seckel, QC, Law Foundation Executive Director
Wayne Robertson, Law Society Past-Presidents Robert McDiarmid, QC and Anna
Fung, QC, and Law Society Chief Information Officer Adam Whitcombe."

Does this mean that as head of the Public Service Mr. Seckel will be taking orders from his boss to shut down the public's access to the information?
Is this the new Attorney General of British Columbia?

Assistant Deputy Attorney General
Thanks, Anon 5:46 ...

Can you give us an URL for the source of this quote?
It's just all too cozy when it comes to BC Rail.
URL for the source of the quote:

File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - View

And more.... on the new Deputy AG
NEWS FLASH......DAH-DAH-DIT-DAH-DUH.... VICTORIA – Allan P. Seckel, Q.C., has been appointed Deputy Minister to the Premier, Cabinet Secretary and Head of the British Columbia Public Service, SNIP

In June of this year, at the swearing in of Cabinet, and lesser known mortals aka MLA, the official announcement stated that:

"Office of the Premier

Jessica McDonald, Deputy Minister to the Premier and Cabinet Secretary .... no mention of her being in charge of the Public Service at that point in time, however.... further on down it did state who was in charge, and being paid, at no extra cost to the taxpayers either, (but it seems we have been paying for her services of looking after the Public Service department even though she wasn't in control... DUH....) effective tomorrow:


(Minister Responsible for Multiculturalism and the Public Affairs Bureau)

General Responsibilities
Citizen service delivery
Government agents, BC Stats, BCOnLine, Enquiry BC, Online Channel Office, Business and personal property registries services, Citizen Engagement, Multiculturalism, Queen’s Printer, Canada-BC Business Service Centre,
Chief Information Officer, Information and privacy policy,
Workforce planning, Employee engagement, BC Public Service Agency, Public Affairs Bureau,

Shared Services BC: Accommodation and Real Estate Services, Workplace Technology Services, Alternative Service Delivery, Procurement and Supply Services, Corporate Accounting Services, Telecommunications infrastructure, Solutions BC

Oh, and who is in charge of this vast domain, from the time Ms. McDonald stopped holding the reins of power until Allan Seckel stepped up to the plate to take control, none other than ......Hon. Ben Stewart.

From Ms. McDonald's desk explaining why she resigned....

Dear employees and staff and huddle masses:

"This was not an easy decision. I considered enabling a change of leadership during the transition immediately following the election, but I found I could not take the decision to leave in the middle of impending workforce adjustment.

I felt it was important to see any job impacts through, continuing to work on finding every solution to minimize effects on employees.

I am proud of the intensive work we have done over the months leading up to the implementation of the revised budget. I can now leave my position knowing in my heart that every step has been taken to continue building a strong public service and avoid any unnecessary hardship for individuals."

Come off it Ms. McDonald, its obvious the Premier can't tell the truth, why don't you..... oh wait a minute, that editorial cartoon in the Province, that was YOU! We could only see BC we thought it was Miss BC but it was really BC Public Service... RIGHT?!
In the Vancouver Sun this morning a different story is emerging, from the lips of Jessica McDonald, as an aside story to Vaughn Palmer's column.

The plan on her part was that she would always partake in a four year term with the BC Liberals...ooop... BC Government, no matter who was in power, I suppose.

Can we get a similar promise from the incoming Deputy Minister, now, or do we have to wait till later.

Ms. McDonald remains at full pay until the end of the year while she assists in the transition from one Deputy to another. I say GO NOW, forget about any transition contribution. The sooner she completes her one year suspension of possibly using information from within Cabinet's privileged circle the better the search for a new job.... like in Run of River projects, wind turbines, to which many other inner circle members to BC Liberals have gone Paul Taylor and Geoff Plante, they could use someone of her calibre.
The Haida Nation has put up $800 million …

The agreement struck with NaiKun Wind Energy Group Inc. calls for the construction of 110 hydro-generating wind turbines in the Hecate Strait, about 100 kilometres from Prince Rupert…
The electricity generated by the turbines will be enough to power 130,000 homes, said Doug McClelland of NaiKun.

ICBC = Doug McClelland

What can we say? Connections yet again?

Where will Ms. McDonald end up?

(Sorry, ended up off the rail topic, but the whole thing smells to high heaven!)

You know, I watched the 5 0'clock news on all three channels: CBC CTV and Global (with a rapid-fire remote), and heard absolutely nothing about the DM's quitting. I would think that the Deputy Minister's leaving would be front-page newpaper and a lead story for TV. The silence is very strange.
The Calgary moron with the tiger was seemingly more newsworthy.


Post report prompts privacy czar investigation

Shannon Kari, National Post Published: Tuesday, October 06, 2009

An investigation by the Ontario Privacy Commissioner has revealed that the practice of secret background checks of potential jurors in the province was significantly more widespread than the government has admitted...." SNIP

Is this a common practice by other provinces Attorney Generals?
Is this a silly question to ask?

Why is the Attorney General called a "General"..... Answer: Because he's the chief law officer of a country or state.

If the Attorney General is a "Chief" then shouldn't the First Nation people .....
It was when ICBC went to court.
Good catch, Curt.

Add Paul Taylor to that Naikun list...among others.

Key BC Liberal Insiders hired by Private Power Developers:

"Here is a list of all the known former bureaucratic and political staffers now on the payrolls of the private power industry":

Patrick Kinsella, Co-chair of 2001 and 2005 BC Liberal provincial campaigns -has consulted for Alcan, Accenture and now Plutonic Power. Alleged to have worked for both CN and BC Rail as BC Rail was being sold to CN.

David Cyr, former Assistant to BC Liberal Minister Mike de Jong, now a director at Plutonic Power/GE.

Robert Poore, recently worked under
the Provincial Revenue Minister of the Province of BC, now a senior director at Plutonic Power/GE.

Tom Syer, former deputy chief of staff to Gordon Campbell, now a director at Plutonic Power/GE.

Bill Irwin, after holding key positions in the BC Ministries of Land and Water, and Crown Lands, now a director at Plutonic Power/GE.

Doug Bishop, formerly 32 years with
BC Hydro and Powerex, now with Plutonic Power/GE.

Bruce Ripley spent the last 2 of his 16 years at BC Hydro as VP Engineering, now President and COO of Plutonic Power/GE.

Elisha McCallum (Moreno), after 7
years with BC Hydro as a media relations manager, moved to a directorship with Plutonic Power/GE.

Mark Grant, former executive director of the BC Liberal Party now with Rupert Peace Power.

Bruce Young, has held several high profile positions with the BC Liberal party and lobbied his own party on behalf of Katabatic Power is listed as a director of Atla Energy.

Stephen Kukucha, former senior policy advisor for the BC Ministry of Environment, is now president and CEO of Atla Energy.

Bob Herath, former Assistant Regional Water Manager for the BC Ministry of Environment, now with Syntaris Power.

Paul Taylor, former President and CEO of ICBC as well as high level positions in the BC Government, is now President and CEO of Naikun Wind Energy Group.

Michael J. O’Conner, former President and CEO of Crown Corporation BC Transit, now holds senior positions at Naikun.

Jackie Hamilton, formerly held various BC Government environmental assessment and regulatory management positions, is now a VP at Cloudworks Energy.

Michael Margolick, held positions in resource and strategic planning at BC Hydro, now is the Vice President of Power and Transmission planning at Naikun Wind.

Robert Price, after a 30-year career at BC Hydro and Power Authority which culminated as the utility’s Vancouver Island transmission line construction,
supervision and operations manager, now a member of the Hawkeye ‘team’.

Mr. Paul Adams, after a 33-year career with BC Hydro in which he held senior management positions, now is another ‘team’ member at Hawkeye.

Ron Monk, former BC Hydro Engineer,
now employed by Kerr Wood Leidal
engineering firm used by IPPs.

Wayne Chambers, a former BC Hydro
power plant and substation operator,now a manager at Cloudworks.

Alexander Kiess, after long career with BC Hydro in management, now works as a consultant to Syntaris Power.

Geoff Plant, former BC Liberal Attorney General, now chair of Renaissance Power.
And then the latest to hit the BC Liberals via a question from Adrian Dix on "Kickbacks" in the Ministry of Health under George Abbott's watch now being handled by Kevin Falcon....

It was on CBC tonight.

The RCMP investigation has been going on for two years with the last of it coming out to the public withing two months.....and two months before the 2010 Winter Olympics.

Millions of dollar have been paid out in double and triple billing, yet to be proven in a court of law... so says CBC.
Anon 8:00,

What a shock!

I had been listening to CBC Newsworld this afternoon where Ontario's Leader of the Opposition was denouncing the Ontario premier bing, bang, blam ... and inside my head was a voice shouting "Yes! That's how you say it!"

Seems the Ontario Minister of Health had resigned over alleged irregularities within the establishment of their eHealth system. Budget over-runs, untendered contracts, etc.

Than you tell us that BC had a similar dust-up last April ... which was on this evening's CBC News. A Special Prosecutor has been appointed for this BC Case. Thanks for the tip, 8:00 ...

The URL for the CBC story is:

It's really off the topic of BC Rail and yet we should never doubt that corruption spreads like wildfire. That's what the raids on the BC Legislature was all about and it's a tragedy that our judicial system cannot come to grips with the issues to prove or disprove the allegations before it's too late.
This smacks of Basi and Virk's trip to a football game paid for by Omintrax.

"RCMP alleges breach of trust by B.C. official

A former B.C. assistant deputy minister of health is under investigation for alleged breach of trust, CBC News has learned.

The RCMP commercial crime squad has been investigating Ron Danderfer, once head of the province's Department of Vital Statistics, and who was assistant deputy health minister until 2007, according to a search warrant obtained by CBC News.

Investigators have alleged Danderfer accepted a trip to Paris, free stays at a Kelowna condominium, and offers of unspecified post-retirement income from Dr. Jonathan Burns, of Abbotsford." SNIP

Your link is way out of Date BC Mary.

This is October, not July.

Just publish my last one to you
BREACH OF TRUST This is just like the BC Rail raid on the Legislature

Matter raised in legislature

In the legislature Wednesday, B.C. NDP Health Critic Adrian Dix confronted Health Minister Kevin Falcon with the contents of the RCMP documents.

"At the same time, Dr. Burns was being paid $30,000 a month to advise the minister of health, and the ministry of health, at the same time that he was continuing to charge MSP [Medical Services Plan] as a doctor and at the same time as he served as CEO of WebMed, with contracts with all of the health authorities, the Provincial Health Services Authority gave a contract to Dr. Burns at nearly $200 an hour — $6,000 a week — to be their e-health adviser, presumably to lobby himself," Dix said.

"I've been in this house long enough to hear these kinds of wild allegation by this member over a whole range of issues," Falcon replied.

"We will get the facts, and I won't be surprised if, in fact, the facts depart very clearly from what the member's alleging," said Falcon."

Yeah sure Kevin, can you spell "Ken Dobell" double dipping
RCMP alleges kickbacks against BC official

Looks as if the RCMP deserve a tip o'the tuque on this one, eh?
Hmmm. The BC NDP website has been updated on the latest news of KICKBACK. Is it because they don't want a lawyer like Sullivan acting on behalf of a client like Kinsella telling them to RETRACT or face a lawsuit?
Jessica McDonald left before the latest scandal hit the airwaves in Hansard and newspapers.

Did she know before hand?
Another URL dated Oct. 7, 2009:

Court documents reveal allegations of fraud among public officials

Good work RCMP, I say.
Post a Comment

<< Home