January 15, 2018
Carillion Canada files for creditor protection
- Carillion Canada, which held maintenance contracts for approximately 40 per cent of Alberta highways, is granted protection from creditors, and interim funding from Alberta Transportation later in the spring.
- Of the six companies holding highway maintenance contracts in Alberta, Carillion was the only one to have a workforce unionized under the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees.
April 10, 2018
The ARHCA contacts Minister Mason to offer a solution
- The Alberta Roadbuilders & Heavy Construction Association writes a letter to Minister Brian Mason to recommend a made-in-Alberta solution for the allocation of Carillion’s highway maintenance contracts.
- That proposal would have protected the Carillion employees’ jobs, kept the highways safe, and enabled proper competitive tenders once the contracts reached the end of their terms.
- This reasonable solution is ignored by Alberta Transportation.
July 4, 2018
Minister Mason promises to protect the AUPE union jobs
- The Alberta Union of Provincial Employees posts an update to its members with a letter from the minister. The letter says the ministry is negotiating with a third party to take over the Carillion contracts that will protect the union and keep the collective bargaining agreement.
July 26, 2018
Minister Mason approves a sole-source deal
- Alberta Transportation approves the sale of the Carillion highway maintenance contracts, under sweetened terms, to B.C. company Emcon. Minister Mason agrees to pay Emcon nearly $25 million more than Carillion would have received, and extends the end date of the most valuable contract by two years.
- Minister Mason claims that the Emcon deal saved $30 million over what a made-in-Alberta deal would have cost, but he has offered no justification for that number.
- The five companies that currently hold highway maintenance contracts in Alberta are shut out of bidding due to the Minister’s own rules.
July 31, 2018
Five companies take legal action against Alberta Transportation
- Alberta Highway Services Ltd., Carmacks Maintenance Services Ltd., LaPrairie Works Inc., Ledcor Highways Ltd. and Volker Stevin Highways Ltd file an application with the Alberta Court of Queen's Bench. The court application requests judicial review of the Government of Alberta's role in the agreement that was announced by the Alberta Minister of Transportation.
- The five highway maintenance contractors (HMCs) have no objection to Emcon or any other company entering Alberta under an open, competitive and transparent process. We ask only that experienced, proven Alberta maintenance companies be given an equal opportunity to compete for business in Alberta.
September 7, 2018
Government fails to provide documents
- The government lawyers did not provide their documentation in time for the September 7 court date.
- In court on September 7, the government’s lawyers said they could not produce the documents until November 30. The judge gave them until November 15.
- Seeking to understand Minister Mason’s rationale for the Emcon deal, we requested documents under the Freedom of Information Act. The government said we would need to pay $32,000 in fees to get that information.
November 15, 2018
Government documents do not explain the Emcon decision
- Alberta Transportation claims that the HMCs would be unable to take over Carillion’s contracts, and would demand higher fees to do so. There is no backup for these assertions.
- Documents confirm Minister Mason’s recommendation to full Alberta Cabinet to grant Carillion contracts to Emcon.
December 12, 2018
Companies request documents justifying decision
- HMCs make legal request for backup documents to support the Emcon decision, with a deadline of January 4.
- The HMCs are seeking to understand why Alberta Transportation claimed that we would charge a premium to take over the Carillion contracts.
January 4, 2019
Alberta Transportation fails to provide justification
- No information is provided to justify the Minister’s decision.
- There remains no satisfactory explanation for why the government would deliberately tilt the competitive playing field in favour of one company over others.
- The government lawyers refuse to allow the senior officials in Alberta Transportation to appear for questioning by HMC lawyers in the case.
January 21, 2019
Meeting requested with Minister Mason
- HMCs send a letter to Minister Mason to explore out-of-court solutions to the current impasse on the highway maintenance contract issue. We are sensitive to the heavy demands on the Alberta court system and hope we can meet with Minister Mason before the set court date.
February 20, 2019
Minister Mason refuses to meet with us
- HMCs receive a response to our letter to Minister Mason, which requested a meeting with him to resolve this issue. In his response, the minister says that a meeting with our group would be "imprudent," because our issue is before the courts, and because some road maintenance contracts are currently being tendered by his department.
May 16, 2019
We welcome new minister of transportation, hon. Ric mciver
- HMCs send a letter to the newly appointed Minister of Transportation, the Honourable Ric McIver, to welcome him to his new portfolio and offer a meeting around Carillion bankruptcy sale issues.
- To give the new minister time to settle in, we agree to postpone the court dates.
New scheduled court dates