Two points about this saga, now (blessedly) over.
One, everyone now knows it was an Ontario Liberal who brought this scandal-plagued agency – which was conceived of, and managed by, Ontario PCs – to the attention of the Auditor General and the OPP long before the story became front-page news.
Two, it was an Ontario Liberal government that called in an army of auditors, flushed the bad guys, and called in the cops.
Ipso facto, the Opposition’s narrative on this thing was always bullshit. Now everyone knows it, too.
The Canadian Press
TORONTO – Ontario’s scandal-plagued air ambulance service has settled a lawsuit with a former employee who alleged she was fired for being a whistleblower.
Lisa Kirbie sued Ornge only about six weeks ago, but a spokesman for the arm’s-length provincial agency says the case has now been resolved, though details of the settlement are confidential.
Kirbie, who was hired in March 2010 as the director of government and regulatory affairs, alleged in her lawsuit that former CEO Chris Mazza was volatile and sexist.
Kirbie said in her lawsuit that she co-operated with an auditor general’s probe of Ornge, gave provincial police information about Ornge as part of their criminal investigation and notified senior Ministry of Health officials about Mazza’s $1.4-million salary.
Ornge has come under close scrutiny at Ontario’s legislature, where a committee has heard explosive testimony about an alleged kickback scheme, exorbitant salaries and what one politician called “heavy-duty nepotism.”
In her lawsuit, Kirbie alleged she was fired in July without cause and was seeking the equivalent of 40 months of pay and benefits and damages of $100,000.
The lawsuit was settled before the allegations could be tried in court.
…Kirbie said she questioned dealings with Italian firm AgustaWestland, which sold 12 helicopters to Ornge. Ornge Global, a for-profit subsidiary controlled by Mazza, also signed a marketing services agreement with AgustaWestland.
Kirbie said she came to believe that the government agency used public money to pay millions extra for the helicopters then drew up a “bogus” contract to kick back funds to Ornge’s for-profit arm.
…Ornge is currently under a criminal probe for financial irregularities.