Games lack security

The Canada Winter Games is still looking for a security force. Three security companies submitted proposals, following a September tender, but all…

The Canada Winter Games is still looking for a security force.

Three security companies submitted proposals, following a September tender, but all were over budget, said Games general manager Chris Morrissey on Thursday.

“We are not accepting any due to budget constraints,” Morrissey added.

“We are still working on our options.”

Morrissey did not want to say what these options are until the Games makes a final decision.

“We are hoping to have our security plan in place close after the New Year,” he said.

But this may be too late, said Showtime Security owner Don McKenzie, who submitted one of the proposals.

On Thursday, McKenzie received a letter from the Games, dated December 8th, stating all proposals were over budget and the Games was considering other options.

“They only have 71 days left,” said McKenzie, who was frustrated he’d not been notified earlier.

“I put my bid in when the grass was green and there were leaves on the trees,” he said.

In October, McKenzie received two calls from Games RCMP security co-ordinator John Sutherland suggesting all the bids were too high.

But he didn’t receive any official notice until Thursday.

“It’s been multiple months,” said McKenzie.

Setting up a security force will take a tremendous amount of effort and planning, he added.

All security personnel need to be bonded and have Canadian Security Intelligence Service scans, which can take months, said McKenzie.

“And it’s astounding to still not have done this only 71 days out.”

The Games wants a reputable security firm for a variety of different functions, including overnight security and roving security, said Morrissey.

Volunteers will also be doing security, he said, noting that 1,000 have already completed their criminal record checks.

“I don’t think we’ll find volunteers for overnight security,” added Morrissey.

Although he didn’t discuss all Games security options, Morrissey did touch on several possibilities.

“We can potentially go to the RCMP and see if they can do some coverage for us,” he said.

The Games might re-tender it, added Morrissey.

“Or we can go back to Atco Frontenac.

“They’re supplying us with security for the (athletes’) village and there may be an opportunity to work with them through another sponsorship arrangement to do some other security.”

In October, while waiting to hear about his bid, McKenzie saw an ad in the newspaper: Atco Frontenac was looking for 12 guards to work at the athletes’ village during the Games.

“They sole-sourced that contract,” said McKenzie.

“They gave it to the same guys who screwed up the athletes’ village.”

But if a company, like Atco, agrees to some level of sponsorship, it’s not sole sourcing, said Morrissey.

It’s an opportunity, through sponsorship arrangements, to get services, he said.

The Commissionaires Canada also bid on the Games security tender.

Regional manager Niall Sheridan was still waiting to hear from the host society as of Thursday.

He hadn’t received a letter yet.

“We have everything in place,” he said on Thursday.

He’d heard there was a budget problem, but Sheridan was still hopeful.

“We have people on standby,” he said.

But Morrissey confirmed all three security bids were being turned down.

“None of the tenders are being accepted because they’re all over budget,” he said.

“I’ve been mandated to make sure these Games are on budget and on time. So, I’m doing the responsible thing, which is not awarding contracts where I don’t have budget.”

Just Posted

Musician aims to help others with release of Yukon Lullaby for Mental Health

Community rallies to release Nicole Edwards’ latest work

Twenty-two people vie to buy two Arkell properties

The lucky winners two now have until May 5 to purchase lots

Conservative Northern Affairs shadow minister visits Whitehorse

Bob Zimmer was in the Yukon to speak to local business groups about the economy and challenges

YESAB extends public comment period for Kudz Ze Kayah mine project

The extension pushes the public comment period far beyond the 60 days provided in YESAB’s own rules

Police shouldn’t use ‘excessive force,’ Bagnell says regarding national resistance to B.C. pipeline

Yukoners have been pressing Bagnell to clarify his position on RCMP action in Wet’suwet’en territory

Yukonomist: Three questions on Yukon Zinc and China

The case heard recently in Yukon Supreme Court is particularly troubling

Commentary: Highway plans will negatively impact safety

The proposed Alaska Highway work will impact our safety, our communities and our environment.

Olivia Webster is the final musher to finish the Yukon Quest

‘I guess I’ve always been a grandpa’s girl and he’s my best friend, so I kind of wanted to be like him and so I did it’

Yukon’s Rob Cooke and company finish 10th in the 2020 Yukon Quest

Cooke and his 14 Siberians crossed the finish line at 9:07 a.m. on Feb. 15 in Whitehorse

Mailbox: Rendezvous and protests

Letters to the editor from Feb. 14

Lights Out Yukon Invitational Basketball Tournament bigger than ever in sixth year

“Honestly, it was the smoothest tournament I think we’ve run yet”

More Yukon Quest mushers reach finish in Whitehorse

Swedish musher Nora Sjalin is this year’s Rookie of the Year Award winner

History Hunter: Will Rogers and Wiley Post: Their historic visit to the Yukon

The story of the American pilot and the film star has a Yukon connection

Most Read