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Four consultancy firms paid $6m in less than two years, House hears

Unfinished homes at the Caroline Bay resort at Morgan's Point, where Government has paid out several million to liquidators (File photograph)

More than $6 million was paid in consultancy fees to four professional services firms over 19 months, MPs were told yesterday.

But Curtis Dickinson, the finance minister, said more than 60 per cent of the cash went to EY under an order from the courts.

Government had to appoint EY as joint provisional liquidators for the failed resort at Morgan’s Point, to the tune of $4.357 million.

The Government was left owning the debt for the resort in 2019 after its investors called in a multimillion loan guarantee.

The figure covered the period from April 2020 to October this year.

Mr Dickinson released the figures after Parliamentary questions were tabled by Cole Simons, the Opposition leader.

KPMG got $880,132, PwC was paid $594,200 and Deloitte received $220,274 in addition to the cash paid to EY.

Mr Dickinson also broke down the contracts by ministry.

· Cabinet Office: a $70,000 contract with EY to look at the feasibility of attracting companies to a technical hub in Bermuda;

A $276,000 contract for PwC on the economic impact of the one-year residential certificate and to examine the feasibility of a medical tourism centre and vertical farming;

$150,000 for PwC for analysis of the government website and

About $20,000 to KPMG for professional services in relation to the Bermuda Post Office.

· Finance: $234,809 to Deloitte’s administration and support services work on the tax administration portal;

A $4.28 million contract to EY relating to Morgan’s Point and Caroline Bay;

PwC was paid $96,500 for “a series of professional engagements” – a valuation of George’s Bay, part of the Caroline Bay project, phase one of an economic and cashflow model for the economic recovery plan and an assessment of the unemployment benefits programme.

The firm also had a $7,490 contract with the Office of the Tax Commissioner to update the payroll tax calculator system and a $224,493 contract with the Registrar of Companies for a fee structure review linked to the Economic Substance Act.

· Health: KPMG was paid $131,250 to draw up a “road map” to achieve universal health coverage.

· National Security: $5,465 to Deloitte for services to police linked with “a large tax investigation”.

· Officer of the Auditor-General: KPMG earned a total of $496,437 for outsourced audits of the Bermuda Monetary Authority in 2020; Bermuda Hospitals Board, 2018-19; the Bermuda College in 2021, and an accounting course for the Auditor-General’s office;

PwC was contracted and paid $71,000 for outsourced quango audits.

Mr Dickinson added that EY’s report on the technical hub had been submitted for a final review “due in the coming weeks”.

He said the firm had handed in its reports on medical tourism and vertical farming, along with a “road map” for the government portal.

Mr Dickinson added PwC had asked for just $1 to carry out an accounting valuation in connection with a consolidated fund audit on Caroline Bay-linked firm George’s Bay.

The company also completed its phase one work on budgeting and cashflow for the economic recovery plan.

Mr Dickinson told the House that KPMG had finished its work for the Registrar of Companies, as well as the job on the payroll tax calculator, which was now operational.

MPs also heard that KPMG had handed in the “deliverables” for a three-year road map to universal healthcare.

Mr Dickinson said PwC had a contract with the Cabinet Office on the United Nations’ 17 sustainable development goals for 2030.

The firm will hand in its report on the business need for Bermuda’s planned arbitration centre early next year.

Mr Dickinson added that EY’s work as the joint provisional liquidator at Morgan’s Point would continue.

He said Deloitte’s work on tax administration and KPMG’s work for the Auditor-General had also still to be completed.

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Published December 11, 2021 at 7:55 am (Updated December 13, 2021 at 9:49 am)

Four consultancy firms paid $6m in less than two years, House hears

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