Tag: monopoly

    Tour boats contract bid process under fire

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    From the Globe and Mail:

    The Niagara Parks Commission is fending off claims it is tilting a tendering process in favour of the Maid of the Mist, the tour boat company whose exclusive access to Niagara Falls has been controversial for the Ontario government agency.

    Last year, after a four-decade monopoly for the Maid’s American owners, the province ordered the parks commission to tender the boat lease, worth more than $5-million a year to the $80-million agency. The order followed complaints in 2008 that would-be competitors had been turned away despite having promised richer returns to the commission, which for four straight years has lost money after more than a century of steady profitability.

    A fairness commissioner and outside experts were appointed to prevent bias in the tender, but certain clauses in the bid document – drafted by the same parks officials who supported the Maid monopoly in the past – are raising questions about its fairness, and about Ontario’s efforts to improve its stewardship of Niagara Falls, a jewel of Canadian tourism and beacon to travellers around the world.

    Monopoly snub unthinkable

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    From the Niagara Falls Review:

    Rich Uncle Pennybags can blow it out his top hat.

    He’s the cartoon-character mascot of the Monopoly board game. Despite his grandfatherly image – with that Wilford Brimley mustache, sophisticated walking stick and the same tuxedo he has been wearing for nearly a century – Pennybags just snubbed Niagara Falls in the most unthinkable way.

    Niagara Falls – probably one of the most identifiable Canadian icons – was left out of the newest Canadian version of the board game. Adding insult to injury, it got passed over in favour of oh-so-popular and ever-famous Canadian locales like Sarnia, Ont., and Saint-Jean-Sur-Richilieu, Que.

    No free parking in a Niagara Falls Monopoly game

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    From the Niagara Falls Review:

    The heck with Hasbro, makers of the Monopoly game, and the way it’s forcing Niagara Falls to win an online contest to earn a place on its new Canadian edition of the world-famous board game.

    Niagara Falls isn’t second prize in somebody’s beauty contest.

    The company is holding a vote to determine which Canadian cities should be used to replace the Atlantic City street names that make up the squares in the classic edition.

    Because of its population, Niagara Falls didn’t get the same automatic entry into the balloting lesser-known cities like Peterborough, Brandon and Kamloops got.

    Go to www.monopolyvote.ca to do your civic duty and ensure a Canadian icon doesn’t get shoved aside by Saskatoon.

    Dogged voting could make Falls a shoe-in on Monopoly board

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    From the Niagara Falls Review:

    Vote, vote, vote.

    That’s the only way Niagara Falls will have a chance to end up on the new Canadian version of the ever-popular board game Monopoly.

    Sixty-five cities were preselected for the national vote – but Niagara Falls isn’t on the list.

    Nothing to worry about, said Hasbro Canada spokeswoman Sandra Paulini, because cities that made the list were chosen based on population.

    “Just because Niagara Falls is not on that list doesn’t mean it will not get a spot,” she said.

    Maid of the Mist decision facing review

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    From the Globe and Mail:

    The Niagara Parks Commission, the secretive provincial agency that manages the Canadian side of Niagara Falls, has been ordered to review its decision to extend the Maid of the Mist’s monopoly on boat tours of the world-famous landmark.

    The Queen’s Park directive follows two government-ordered reviews of the agency launched in March after The Globe and Mail reported on complaints that the commission granted a 25-year lease extension to the U.S.-owned Maid of the Mist without inviting bids from would-be competitors. The commission meets in private and reports to the Ministry of Tourism.

    One of the reviews dealt with governance, and was conducted by an outside accounting firm, while the other was a government audit of the agency’s procurement and leasing activities.

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