Reprinted from November 2013.
What’s in a name?
Shakespeare said, “That which we call a rose, by any other name would smell as sweet.”
Organizations that aim to safeguard assets create effective operational and audit controls. They also respect codes of ethics like that of SCMA, a group of professionals working in procurement, contract administration and materials management. It states,
…members must ensure that the objectivity of their decisions is not compromised or unduly influenced by the acceptance of gifts, gratuities, or hospitalities of any kind. Members should be discerning in their business and social relationships and activities…
Protections are particularly needed in the public sector where citizen interests are scattered but the values of controlled assets can be enormous. This fundamental principle of commerce is routinely ignored in the business of government; especially right here, right now.
For years, the BC Liberals have been financed by what the Sun’s Gordon Hoekstra, in Corporations fill Liberal coffers, called “a well-heeled corporate coterie.” Among the lead supporters is gas company Encana, which, with Teck Resources, added $2.5 million to Liberal accounts. These and other companies made large contributions for reasons of self interest. Indeed, they got results.
In 2005, BC’s revenue from natural resources was 18.5% of the value produced. In 2012, the revenue share was 11.4%. Had the percentage of 2005 been applied to the most recent fiscal year, the province would have recorded additional resource revenues of $1.2 billion.
As Everett Dirksen might have said,
A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon you’re talking about real money.