Paul Calandra is now the go-to guy at in the Ontario government for apologies. It is his ability to feel the pain. He is the guy who cried for the House of Commons in Ottawa when the MP was the appointed apologist for prime minister Stephen Harper. He is now basking in the accolades from the building industry as an MPP in Ontario.
Just last week, as the new minister of housing for the Ford government, Calandra apologised to the Building Industry and Land Development (BILD) association, at their annual general meeting in Woodbridge. They treated him kindly. They even offered him a free lunch.
With the Royal Canadian Mounted Police possibly checking his script, an unabashed Calandra told his audience that he regretted that the government could not bring people with them in their 7,400 acre give-away in the Greenbelt. It came across as though he and the Ford government were deeply disappointed that they did not do it right the first time. It is not known just how strongly the audience felt about losing the potential billions in profit.
The particularly poignant part of the speech was the heartfelt shout-out to Silvio De Gasperis president and CEO of TAAC Developments. Calandra could not seem to say enough to this gentleman of their mutual Italian heritage. He made it sound as though he and the conservatives in government were deeply disappointed that they could not deliver to Mr. De Gasperis and friends the billions in profit that the conservatives thought they had earned.
But it sounded like Mr. Calandra was telling the builders that next time, the government will get its ducks in order before playing Grand Theft Greenbelt.
Some of the comments from the attendees made it sound as though they were puzzled by minister of housing. They complained that Calandra made it sound as though the Ontario government and the building industry in Ontario were joined at the hip.
But, all in all, it was a good time for all when Paul Calandra came to Woodbridge.
Copyright 2023 © Peter Lowry
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