Feds spent $6.8M to house 15 people in Calgary quarantine hotel last year


Turning the Westin’s Calgary Airport hotel into a COVID quarantine center for tourists cost the federal government $268 million from 2020 to 2022, according to files.

$268 M invested from 2020 to 2022 on center at Westin hotel near airport

Elise von Scheel · CBC News


This picture reveals the within Calgary’s quarantine hotel in February2021 (Submitted by Angelo Vanegas)

Turning the Westin’s Calgary Airport hotel into a COVID-19 quarantine center for tourists cost the federal government $268 million from 2020 to 2022, according to files.

That consists of $6.8 million invested in 2022 to house and feed 15 individuals– an expense breakdown of about $453,000 per individual for that.

The figures were launched in action to an order paper concern, a system for members of Parliament to request info, sent by Calgary-Nose Hill agent Michelle Rempel-Garner.

The file, published online Monday by the Conservative MP, broke down the year-over-year costs.

The federal government stated it paid $8.9 million to the hotel for accommodations and meals in the 2020-21 , $111 million the list below year, and $6.8 million the year after.

An overall of 1,490 tourists utilized the hotel– 119 in 2020, 1,356 in 2021 and 15 in2022

That exercises to $18,000 per visitor in general, however 2022’s breakdown per individual is about $453,000

Cleaning services, transport and other assistances amounted to an extra $4.4 million.

‘ Complete waste,’ MP states of the figures

Ottawa concluded its offer with the Westin at the end of October 2022, according to the general public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC). All staying COVID-related travel limitations ended on the very first of that month.

The federal government had actually currently dropped the pre-arrival screening requirement for completely immunized visitors in April and the vaccination requirement for outbound and domestic visitors in June2022

” There’s no validation for this cost. It’s total waste, it’s total mismanagement,” Rempel-Garner stated in a video. She was not available for an interview.

” It’s equating this cash into what it indicates for a typical individual. Once again, 4,100 Calgarians might have had their lease spent for a month based upon what they lost on here.”

Between March of 2020 and September 2022, the federal government had contracts for 38 quarantine hotel websites in 14 cities throughout the nation. Ottawa invested an overall of $3887 million throughout those operation dates, according to a declaration from PHAC. That breaks down to $1585 million in 2020-21, $153 million in 2021-22, and $772 million in 2022-23

” The Government of Canada has actually constantly worked to safeguard Canadians, adjusting our COVID-19 reaction based upon the most recent science and proof,” representative Tammy Jarbeau stated in an e-mail.

” These centers existed as an essential procedure to stop the spread and conserve lives.”

One political researcher stated this details might trigger additional reaction versus the federal government amongst those in Alberta who opposed its pandemic technique.

” This isn’t simply a routine federal government waste story. It’s likewise a COVID story,” stated Duane Bratt, a political researcher at Mount Royal University.

” It harmonizes that narrative about while public health constraints were required, they triggered unnecessary damage and now they’re costing countless dollars in inefficient costs.”

Canada has actually had more than 4.5 million cases of COVID-19, and 50,380 individuals have actually passed away from the infection, according to Health Canada.


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