Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Finally... some of the other side of the story...

In the last 24 hours I've finally seen some of the positive news stories relating to PEI's PNP investments and it appears most of them are coming from business people who are frustrated at the one sided "knocking" recipients of PNP were getting... it was starting to tarnish the image of small Island businesses and they are "speaking out" to the media as the media were never looking for the good side of the story... What was it with the media on this PNP file... first it was the "CBC political panel"... Jack, John and Paul doing a wrap up of the last house session and the next thing their pounding the Government on the PNP files and alluding to all kinds of cover-ups, improprieties and conflicts yet each and every one of them were recipients of the program themselves... no proof, no auditor's report, just damning the very program they took advantage of... one would have thought that the CBC program director and management would have had the good sense to know the panellists were in some sort of conflict themselves before they let them approach the subject on air... they didn't even have the decency to promote the benefits the program was to their own businesses.... then we have the case of the Guardian reporter "qualifying" Gordon Cobb as "a senior adviser on the Provincial Nominee Program" when in fact Cobb had little or nothing to do with the program other than his trying to get the Deputy Minister's job... as I hear it he did little of anything on the file... so where was the Editor who should have asked these questions... and when the Opposition where firing off innuendos about how the Liberals managed the programs and who got what.... why didn't the media ask the Opposition how they had managed the program any better… and had they any improprieties within their own administration of the program... there is enough "crap" going on in this world and it's time the media starting looking for both side of the story.... as there is a good side to this story...
Business rallying for immigrant investor program
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
CBC News
P.E.I.'s business community is coming out in support of a controversial program that funnels investment money from immigrants into the Island's small businesses. Garth Doiron of the Summerside Chamber of Commerce says politics needs to be taken out of the discussion about the Provincial Nominee Program.
The immigrant partner section of the Provincial Nominee Program started in 2001 and ran through to September last year. A new version of the immigrant-investment aspect of the program — which is a federal-provincial partnership — is now in place but has different investment criteria that are out of reach for most Island businesses.
Not long after the original program ended, questions were raised about the quality of companies supported by it, and the direct involvement of government MLAs and senior civil servants.
While acknowledging there may have been problems with the program, the business community is urging people to keep in mind it brought much-needed business investment to the Island.
"Small business on P.E.I. needs a program like that," Don Cudmore, executive director of the Tourism Industry Association of P.E.I., told CBC News on Tuesday.
"It certainly helped [tourism operators] get through the last couple of tougher years."
Provincial Treasurer Wes Sheridan said he has been hearing about the need for the PNP program as he carries out his pre-budget consultations.
On Tuesday, Garth Doiron, president of the Summerside Chamber of Commerce, said: "It's become a political issue and we think that needs to end. Cathy Hambly said the benefits of the immigrant partner area of the PNP program need to be remembered. (CBC)
"Proactive steps [need to be] taken to make sure it [the immigrant partner program] continues in the future."
Cathy Hambley, executive director of the Charlottetown Chamber of Commerce, had a similar message.
"Not everything worked 100 per cent properly, or maybe the communication wasn't what it might have been and so on, so forth," she said.
"But I don't think we can lose sight of the overall benefit of this program to our business community and the broader community at large."
Sheridan believes the program is shielding the province from the worst of the current recession.
"We were the only community to grow east of Manitoba, so there's no question that immigration has been a big factor in why our numbers are where they are," he said.
The original program that ended in September required immigrants to put up $200,000 each.
The new program negotiated between Ottawa and the provinces requires $1 million.

No comments: