HM PM Stephen Harper has indicated that there will not be public funding for an arena in Quebec City. That is good. We need to cut spending!
OTTAWA — Prime Minister Stephen Harper threw more cold water on the idea that the federal government could help build an arena so that Quebec City could win an NHL franchise.
“There’s no federal program to fund professional sports facilities,” he told French-TV network TVA hosts Paul Larocque and Jean Lapierre from the prime minister’s cottage at Harrington Lake, Que. in an interview recorded Dec. 17. “Not now, not in previous decades. Pro sports are first and foremost the responsibility of the private sector, and I am encouraging the private sector to come up with a solution.
“If Ottawa did something like that, we’d have to do it across the country, and the list is long. Hamilton, Regina, Edmonton, even my hometown of Calgary, everyone wants a new facility.”
Harper suggested that traditionally Ottawa would only get into funding an arena if it were part of Olympic bid.
Quebec City Mayor Regis Labeaume “told me he would be looking to have Quebec City bid on the Olympic Games. And I encouraged him. Historically, that’s how Ottawa supports the development of large-scale sports facilities.”
Harper added: “You have to be realistic. A project of this nature has to be affordable and fair for the entire country.”