The State Liberals are concerned at the potential risks to taxpayers from the rising tide of litigation engulfing the new Royal Adelaide Hospital (nRAH).
“The reason why the Government entered a public private partnership for the nRAH was to protect taxpayers from cost blow-outs but all we seem to have achieved is a high stakes game of Russian roulette in the courts,” said Shadow Minister for Health Stephen Wade.
“The fact the Weatherill Government is ensnared in various legal actions despite the fact the hospital is now 8 months overdue and $640 million over budget indicates the contract is flawed.
“Yesterday Justice Blue reportedly expressed his amazement that the contract does not address ramifications for non-compliance.
“Health Minister Jack Snelling needs to explain why taxpayers are saddled with a contact that doesn’t have direct penalties for non-compliance.
“Minister Snelling needs to explain why we still don’t know when the hospital will open given the Weatherill Government paid the consortium an extra $68.6 million of taxpayers’ money in September 2015 to guarantee ‘certainty’ about the completion of the project.
“What was this money for and why are taxpayer’s still at risk of even greater financial penalties.
“Minister Snelling should also tell the public when he is budgeting on the hospital opening and if he has already banked the ‘savings’ from the delayed opening of the nRAH.
“The mid-year budget review is due before Christmas and both of these financial calculations will have already been made.”