To the Editor,
In a St. Patrick’s Day story entitled “CCA makes headway on federal prompt payment initiatives,” the association’s president Michael Atkinson was quoted as saying exactly what trade contractors have known for years — that relying on “principles” to address payment delays “doesn’t necessarily mean it has any force and effect.”
The article talked about the 12 potential solutions being discussed to address payment delays on federal projects but failed to mention the only binding, enforceable solution: prompt payment legislation.
Bill S-224, the Canada Prompt Payment Act, was introduced in the Senate over 11 months ago. The Canadian Construction Association (CCA) has taken no public position on the legislation.
It is clear to Canada's trade contractors and suppliers that, while a piece of legislation has been tabled that would solve the issue of payment delays with the federal government, it is irresponsible for CCA to stay on the sidelines.
Continuing to make progress toward changes that have no force and effect is the definition of futility.
With thousands of members affected by the issue of payment delays one would expect CCA to take the issue seriously enough to support the bill and to work toward its improvement and passing in parliament. Payment delays drive up project costs, lead to fewer apprentices being trained, decrease the number of tradespeople being hired and the only winners are organizations that profit from payments being withheld on work that is certified and complete.
These facts speak for themselves.
That CCA has taken no position on Bill S-224 shows its members that the organization is either opposed to an enforceable solution, or that its leadership is staggeringly indifferent.
Canada's trade contractors, many of whom remain concerned members of CCA, are calling on the association to stand with the people and businesses that drive Canada's growth and maintain the strength of our industry — CCA must publicly state its position on this bill.
The National Trade Contractors Coalition of Canada and Partners
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