HS2 Ltds’ bosses’ firm stings Government for an extra 49% -so far

Last week, we reported that surprise surprise, CH2M Hill, the company of the current and future HS2 Ltd CEOs, had been awarded the £170m contract for ‘Phase 2b delivery partner’, after previously getting the same contract on Phase 1.

This was met by an insistence from HS2 Ltd that ‘Chinese Walls’ had been erected to stop the seconded Roy Hill having anything to do with the contract awards, handily missing the point that he is a representative of the industry which has been lobbying for HS2 from the outset.

Since the inception of HS2, it has regularly been the case that contractors have gone well over budget. It has been revealed via a written answer, that CH2M Hill have gone miles over budget for their Phase 1 work.

Chesham and Amersham MP Cheryl Gillan asked just how much they have been paid so far, and when the table of cash is added up, it comes to £104m. the problem is, the value of the contract they were awarded was just £70m, meaning they have been payed 49% more than they quoted back in 2012.

YearAmount
2011/12£1,438,120
2012/13£14,371,903
2013/14£17,058,089
2014/15£25,334,600
2015/16£32,454,382
2016/17£9,493,030
TOTAL£104,212,967 

This may in part explain why the Phase 2b contract at £170m is so much higher than the Phase 1 one of £70m, despite the fact the sections of route are roughly the same length.

The current list of companies in the “HSR Industry Leaders Group”, who have lobbied for HS2 and of course are getting the contracts to build it.

Of course, with the construction industry running the HS2 project as their own personal kleptocracy, there has never been any problem with companies going miles over budget on their contracts.

The very odd thing that has just happened, is that although Rail Minister Andrew Jones was able to answer Mrs Gillan when she asked for the amount paid to a specific consultancy, apparently it’s simply too hard to find out just how much has been paid to all the companies who have lobbied for their own gravy train. When Steve Rotheram MP posed this very similar written question:

“To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the cost to the public purse has been of consultants working on High Speed 2.”

Jones gave him this answer:

“HS2 Ltd element of consultancy expenditure, as defined by the Cabinet Office, is not readily available in the format requested and could only be obtained at a disproportionate cost.”

Now to anyone who has any experience working in even the most basic elements financial administration, this again stinks of gravy. The entire concept that it is seemingly too difficult to pull out a report of the total amount paid to a specific firm, or on a specific contract, is quite simply unbelievable. To not be able to pull out those financial reports with a couple of mouse clicks or keystrokes suggests an accounts department which is completely and totally incompetent.

Now, the way the finances of HS2 have been run, along with everything else they do, does suggest incompetence, but in our opinion, this is below even their level. What is far more likely is that no-one wants the information made public.

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4 comments on “HS2 Ltds’ bosses’ firm stings Government for an extra 49% -so far
  1. Pingback: STOP HS2 | “Total cost of HS2 will be over £200 billion” claims MP.

  2. They are a private army in control of our government and, I quote, “Now, the way the finances of HS2 have been run, along with everything else they do, does suggest incompetence, but in our opinion, this is below even their level. What is far more likely is that no-one wants the information made public.”
    They may not have real guns and bombs, but they plan to drive through their ambitious plans with bulldozers and vehicles of destruction for their own ends.
    The British government can’t stop them!

  3. A divine accountant keeping up with the balance of the expenses for HS2 related legal challenges, made by honest ‘gravy averse’ people in their attempts to guarantee moral correctness of this project, would need a very long pencil!
    Honest mortals can only surmise the sums and struggle with contemplating the avarice.

    How much IS this gravy-train really going to cost? We will never know.

  4. If Mrs May can present the cases against and for investing £100 Billion into rail ways or into other national facilities, services and schemes MPs may agree with Mrs May’s arguments against spending debt on HS2. The arguments against HS2 were stated by the Lords in committee. Mrs May can readily explain in the future or today were the UK has unmet needs that impact many more people than will ever pay to ride the extreme trains on the HS2 route. Millions and tens of millions in the UK hope and pray for Mrs May to say she has thought and thought and thought about HS2 and finds that there are more pressing immediate needs for the nation and for its people. Democracy finally responded to the people rather than their MPs recently and will do again if there is a referendum to determine the people’s opinion on HS2. The President of the Supreme Court addressed the Article 50 protocol but failed not to be duped by HS2 and the Governments promises to the Supreme Court that were not kept. The nation’s population does not support the Royal Assent of the HS2 hybrid bill. Please have your say in the name of the public Mrs May. You will be supported aloud by the people.

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