Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Big City Cheap

Prudent folk like to keep a little cash on hand to meet unforeseen emergencies--the transmission breaks down on the 401, the heating oil runs out on a 30-below night, Cousin Jimmy needs to make bail, etc.

So too did the prudent folk who ran the sponsorship fund, according to CP and the Globe & Mail:

An Italian community group received $5,000 from a sponsorship slush fund after making a written request to former public works minister Alfonso Gagliano, the sponsorship inquiry was told on Tuesday.

In the August 1998 letter to Mr. Gagliano at his Montreal office, the Casa D'Italia requested his "generous contribution in the form of sponsorship for our annual fundraising campaign."

They asked for $5,000, which included the cost of having Mr. Gagliano's picture inserted into the event's official program, according to the letter.

Two months later, the group received exactly the amount it was seeking from Mr. Gagliano's department. Documents show the money came from a $500,000 special annual fund for "unforeseen" sponsored events.


But it only became clear this week that a slush fund existed and that many of the events that received money from the fund were in Mr. Gagliano's riding and the central Quebec riding held for decades by former prime minister Jean Chr├ętien.

The Casa D'Italia benefit dinner was among three Italian community events that received a total of $25,000 from the special fund in 1998.

Amazing how these annual events, planned months in advance, held every year at the same time and place like clockwork, publicized all over the community to interested persons, just happen to be unforeseen?

Amazing also, that all these emergencies kept cropping up just in those two ridings?

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