W, n ,
"i believe that your nal report was well balanced and repre- sents a signicant step forward in our ability to work together in meeting a common commitment of providing the public with useful and relevant information on the 2010 Winter games. is view is also expressed in the province's pending response to your full report." But we are unable to release that.
"i wish to reiterate our desire to continue to work together with your oce in a positive way and ask that you reconsider your decision to withhold the release of the nal report. e province stands ready to formally submit its response to you to accompany your report so that the two documents may be publicly released together, as practiced in many of the previous years.
"colin hansen, minister of finance" i need to say that, because that is…. We've worked many years together, our oce and the oce of the auditor general. in all of my 35 years, about, of public service i have never seen this kind of practice, so my minister is very dismayed. We think that there's a whole- some story that reects nine months' worth of work and the working together since the previous report in 2006 that the public won't hear.
our rst reaction was to release this report pub- licly. unfortunately, our legal advice was that we could not and should not, because the accountability of the auditor general is not to my minister but to this com- mittee and the legislature as a whole.
 While i cannot ask, other than in a letter to encourage the auditor general to release the report, that's some- thing that you may want to consider as a question later. i'm only telling you what i'm able to do and not do, other than it is frustrating to spend nine months on something and many, many hours of sta and not actually be able to see the result of that work.
at's my sort of preface to that, but i want to respond
to the recommendation that was made.
in the report, that full report that has not been re- leased, you would hear, once again, a reiteration by government in relation to this denition of games costs. if we were to go back to 2008, i said before this commit- tee back then — and i have in previous years made the same statements over and over — that there are count- less denitions of games costs, depending on where you're standing and who you are. citizens have a def- inition; governments have a denition; interest groups have a denition; cities. You name it.
What can be said is that at the time of the awarding of the games the provincial government set down a den- ition. Some people may like it, or some people may not, but it was a denition nonetheless. it said that there is a
nancial commitment of $600 million, and these are the
line items that make that up.
later on that nancial commitment was increased $165 million to recognize canada's higher costs of pro- viding game security. But the point about that is the province has been consistent on reporting on those line
items each and every time. ere are some people that say that you should throw the Sea to Sky in there, throw the convention centre in there. You can throw anything you want in there.
i'm amused by one. What was it? e city of Vancouver. a short while ago, in the summer, its council put out a report. You can see it on their website, and i found it curious in their report about games costs, because they were actually counting the cost of a swimming pool that was part of a larger development, leveraged o the games investment. i just sort of wondered: "What does a swimming pool have to do with Winter games?"
e point i'm making is that there are so many den-
itions that at the time of the awarding of the games, the government said: "We're not going to get into the debate." People are going to choose what is a games cost, whether it's a direct or indirect games cost, and they're going to add or subtract. government made it very clear.
having said all that, what has been stated clearly by the province in each of its publications is that whether you agree or disagree on a games cost, all provincial spending, whether you believe it's games related or not, is actually recorded in the public accounts, which is fully reviewed by the auditor general.
i can give you an update to all of this. We're stand- ing here today. e public accounts came out in June of 2010. one day later, aer the public accounts, we held a technical brieng and released a games cost report and other broader investments so that people could get an update about provincial spending to march 31. But what we also did in that report was provide a little bit more about what we got for it. at's available on the website from the ministry of finance, and it has been out there for some time. So that's the province's update.
e next missing piece we're waiting for now is for
Vanoc, and we've been hearing some releases about that. once those two halves come together, i think then we have something larger to talk about. and even canada. in my opinion, i'm not sure we'll ever nd out the total cost of games security, but canada will have its obligations to report on its activities for the games.
at's my direct response to the recommendation.
ere really was only one signicant one there, but i
thought it was useful to set some context about the report that we're talking about, whether or not it was actually the full report.
b. Ralston (Chair): okay. if i may make a few comments.
firstly, the letter that you refer to that was sent to the chair of this committee, my predecessor, mr. fleming. i've just asked the oce here, the clerk's oce, to check to see if they have a copy, and they don't. So i wasn't aware of that letter.
Secondly, the report that we're dealing with is the re- port that's before the committee now. i may oer mr.