Markham still won’t release full economic impact studies on now-dead NHL arena project

Plans for an NHL arena in the Toronto suburb of Markham are long since dead, but the battle over them goes on: In the latest, the former head of the Markham Village Ratepayers Association, who in 2012 filed a freedom of information request for the economic impact studies conducted by the city for the arena, and who since then has been elected to the Markham city council, is trying to pass a bill to get the full reports released. But it’s not going that well:

She thought she had enough support to get the motion passed, [Karen] Rea says in an interview, but now isn’t sure. The city solicitor has warned councillors that releasing the reports could break confidentiality agreements.

This is the same thing that Markham officials claimed back in 2013, and apparently there hasn’t yet been a ruling on it. The especially weird bit is that not only has Markham already released parts of the reports that it felt bolstered its case for the arena, but the author of one of the reports said city officials “cherry-picked” his findings to make them look more positive. And yet the city lawyer still says the reports can’t be released, thanks to confidentiality agreements with the developer who the city hasn’t heard from in more than a year. Somebody just leak the damn things to Deadspin already, would you?


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