Still waiting

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People in Corner Brook must be getting tired of waiting for their new hospital. There have been 19 announcements about it over the last seven years, and while the money appears to be flowing, shovels haven’t found dirt yet.

“Budget 2008 includes $79.1 million in new and redeveloped health infrastructure. High priority repairs and maintenance in existing health facilities will be addressed with a $33.5-million investment. These investments will bring the total investment in health infrastructure projects and repairs by this government to approximately $240 million. New infrastructure projects include: planning and site selection for a new hospital in Corner Brook …”

A year later, it was “As part of the provincial government’s infrastructure investment package announced in February, Budget 2009 includes investments in health-care facilities throughout Newfoundland and Labrador totalling $76 million. Infrastructure projects include … $4 million for programming and site selection for a new hospital in Corner Brook…”

By September, 2009, it was “Construction of a new state-of-the-art health care facility is one step closer to reality today as the Honourable Danny Williams, premier of Newfoundland and Labrador and MHA for Humber West, announced the site for the new Western Memorial Regional Hospital in Corner Brook.”

Then, “Budget 2010 provides a total of $208.9 million for health-care infrastructure, which includes investments in new construction, redevelopment of existing facilities, purchase of new medical equipment and repairs and maintenance. Investments in new construction and redevelopment total $125.1 million and include … $11.8 million for continued construction of a new hospital in Corner Brook…”

Then, “Health care infrastructure throughout Newfoundland and Labrador continues to be a priority for the provincial government with a total investment of $272.2 million in Budget 2011, which includes $200.6 million for new and continuing construction and redevelopment. … Continued infrastructure projects include … $18.5 million for the continued construction of a new hospital in Corner Brook;

But the news releases have gone on. Here are the ones from 2013 alone:

“March 7: Program Report for Corner Brook Hospital Received and Under Review,” which includes, “The master program report for the new Corner Brook hospital, which will support the finalization of the design for the new facility, was received yesterday from Stantec and is currently under review by the provincial government.”

“March 19: Media Advisory: Premier to Make Pre-Budget Announcement Regarding New Corner Brook Hospital.”

“March 20: Premier Announces $227 Million for New Hospital in Corner Brook.”

Then premier Kathy Dunderdale announced the government had spent $20 million already, and that the $227 million would be spent over “the next three years.” At that point, “The next phase of this project will finalize the design for the new hospital complex. … The project is focused on meeting the health-care needs in the region while balancing the need to construct in a sustainable, cost-effective manner.”

The newest spending? “Funding will be provided through Budget 2014 for continued infrastructure projects, which include: $15 million to continue design and program planning for the new Corner Brook hospital …” Some of that money will be used to determine what kinds of services will be needed at the new hospital.

“I know people are frustrated, they want it done quicker,” Premier Tom Marshall told CBC News Monday. “We have to do it right. You get one chance at this, and we have to ensure it’s done properly.”

Be that as it may, in 2007, Chief Justice Green was writing a report on the constituency allowance scandal, FPI’s assets were being sold and the provincial government was promising the first pavement for the Trans-Labrador highway.

Just saying: it’s been a while.

Organizations: Corner Brook Hospital, Western Memorial Regional Hospital, Stantec CBC News

Geographic location: Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador, Humber West

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Recent comments

  • SayWhat
    April 01, 2014 - 12:08

    You have given us a great time line on an issue. Better yet it shows how that city has become nothing more than a back stabbing hovel. Politicians don't care about these back stabbers at all. Look at today's TC media paper on the west coast. The current mayor of the hovel is backstabbing the previous council over a dump issue that has been going on for decades. Beware the anointed one, remember those in Humber East dumped a former premier at the polls. And with the make up of this dump committee representation, one gets the impression, those that control the Hall that contains the hovel is not so sure you can win Humber East.

  • david
    April 01, 2014 - 10:14

    There is no hospital. Just elections. Very smart, as long as you're dealing the remarkably dim.

  • Corporate Psycho
    April 01, 2014 - 07:21

    Marshall told everyone he wasn't leaving until the hospital was done. Well he's leaving. What does that tell you? If Fort Mac closes down CB will be in big trouble. Will the taxpayers of NL have subsidize their jobs as well like everyone else there?

  • Cashew Explainy
    April 01, 2014 - 05:17

    Corner Brook people are too lazy to look after themselves so they do not matter. All that matters is the health of our three wonderful provincial parties. I worry about their funding levels, especially the PCs, and donate as much as I can spare (got the baby on no name brand food and the heater turned down in her room) to keep our robust and effective politicians operating so yeomanish, so very yoemanlike, on our behalf. Today, is the day we swell with pride and transfats, as we celebrate the hardonworking politicians who brought us Confederation, the Health Canada 1984 Act and the fabulous new hospital in Corner Brook. Even though the people there do not value their health enough to get their own 'corner' looked after, it don't matter. The people of Corner Brook are to blame but the noble politicians are above blaming or shaming them for their lazyness, the integrity of our provincial government will insure the new hospital is built to benefit all chosen contractors in our glorious pine-clapboarded shitshack of a puny-hearterd province.

    • Tony Rockel
      April 02, 2014 - 00:02

      Well said, Cashin. I admire your Joycean style!