“Lack of Federal Crown draws judge’s rebuke” (Feb. 20, Citizen).
Yes, there is a lack of federal Crown everywhere. You've touched softly on the trouble that is boiling beneath.
Canada is in an opioid crisis and those responsible for prosecuting have no care for the north, nor for that matter, any regions outside of Vancouver/Burnaby.
As taxpayers, we have been paying for pensioned prosecutors to fly from North Vancouver to service everything north of P.G., and we'll continue to do so. This past summer, Kelowna lost its longstanding agent firm, only to be absorbed by another agent firm located in Richmond. The general theme when an agent firm is ousted is the billings, yet the PPSC mandate is to minimize costs with local firms. What is the cost when we lose local connections to our communities?
Currently, 46 judicial regions are up for tender in B.C. It would be a miracle if those bids were awarded to any firm that has not already been operating in those regions. Training new firms is such a task for the ASU of the PPSC, hence the fair bidding process.
The agent affairs program with the PPSC is a program designed for the federal government to have their cake and eat it too. There is no support, no training, no resources and definitely no discretion allowed by any agent firms so fairly awarded these contracts, they are but poor man's prosecutors propped up to puppet the PPSC's protocols.
In P.G. the defunct law firm of Kaun Law operated for a short seven years, but its founder prosecuted for nearly 17. He opened his firm on his 65th birthday year and he died on his 72nd. During those seven years, his organic firm went from holding four regions to 21. Most absorbed and then awarded.
For 20 months, the PPSC knew that KLC would not be bidding on any contracts and just three working days before the end of tender the fine feds informed KLC that we were "not the successful candidate." News flash - we didn't bid.
The lack of federal crown is due to a lack of organization and care from the ASU of the PPSC. It is also due to the contracts being awarded to a firm in North Vancouver that has not yet been vetted, announced, organized, and has the best puppet they could find.
Fair and transparent? I think not.