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Friday May 29 2015
6:07 AM EDT
2014-01-31 at 16:49

Money owed to province by Buchanan companies unlikely to be paid, MNR concedes


Money owed to province by Buchanan companies unlikely to be paid, MNR concedes

A forestry company that owed tens of millions of dollars to taxpayers is off the hook. 

Buchanan Forest Products, through a number of different company names, was in debt to Ontario for $29 million in stumpage fees.  But officials with the Ministry of Natural Resources confirm the money will never be collected.

At one time Buchanan owned and operated eight mills across Northwestern Ontario. 

In 2009, all of those mills had been idled and staff let go when the various companies went into receivership. 

The forestry licenses held by different Buchanan companies were terminated between 2011 and 2013. 

Officials at the MNR say the government did not forgive the $29 million.  But the debt was "wound down" at different times as a result of the outcomes of individual bankruptcies. 

All uncollectable debt owned by the bankrupt Buchanan companies was written in late June of last year. 

The $29 million is in addition to a $24-million government loan to Buchanan that was also forgiven. 

That money was used to restart Terrace Bay Pulp.

(Thunder Bay Television)

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sidthekid4 says:
simple as that, start a class action law suit, bucky thinks everyone has forgotten, not so kenny.

2/7/2014 7:46:00 AM
cubby says:
I believe Buchanan made a big mistake when he bought the Terrace Bay pulp mill. It was after this that he started to get into financial problems. this company was the biggest sawmill operator in Ontario before he bought this pulp mill and created thousands of jobs in communities in Ont. and was very successful in the sawmill business. The pensions in the IWA mills were jointly trusted and the workers had control, and money was not lost.
2/3/2014 12:49:27 PM
countryboy123 says:
Unbelievable! He was and probably still is listed a one of the top 100 richest people in Canada. I understand how now. Essentially he steals from us, the citizens of Ontario and the Gov't does little if anything to stop him. Maybe we should start a class action suit againt him. I know of a local lawyers who loves to take on cases like this!
2/2/2014 12:04:41 PM
mystified says:
Buchannon borrowed money from his own holding company North Star and they were first inline to get reimbursed.
2/2/2014 11:08:02 AM
trips says:
gone for good says left bowater because of your attitude and senority and went to Manitoba to work I ask you ..why do you still comment on issues that are not in your realm were kicked to the curb 10 years ago yet still comment on thunder bays issues come other than by canoe?
2/1/2014 8:56:49 PM
The Badger Mountain Hermit says:
Isn't Buchanan's legal counsel a Grit Big-wig?
2/1/2014 12:26:36 PM
ring of fire dude says:
Yes he was/is , also Buchanan executives were in the local Liberal Party election chapter .
2/1/2014 7:13:09 PM
gone for good says:
So get a good lawyer. Know how to skirt around the laws. Then hook the taxpayers and former employees for whatever he can and walk away scot free.
This would make an excellent episode for American Greed if it were not so sad in so many ways.
2/1/2014 11:21:40 AM
windigo says:
Educate yourself. They never lost any pension money. Companies do not have access to the pension money. The pensions where underfunded, as all pensions were, due to the stock market meltdown.
The employees get paid out first, CPP Ei etc. The only money they lost is severance, and no bankrupt company can go and give away money to employees before paying bills. Do you think the Buchanan compaies made a ton of money sawing wood for $154 a thousand board feet?
I wish people cpould understand how finance works
2/1/2014 10:17:11 AM
outside looking in says:
The only problem with the mills going bankrupt is that the other companies that were owed millions of dollars were Buchanan companies as well. He came out ahead by owing millions of dollars to the government and and fleecing his employees of their severence while hiding his money in other companies. There should be a law to prevent this.
2/1/2014 2:47:45 PM
SomeGuy says:
When you setup a numbered company with the express purpose of hiding assets or dividing up assets then declare bankruptcy the government should have the power to go after the other companies owned by the parent company.

When I take out credit for my small business I have to personally guarantee it no matter what, but a large corporation doesn't have to put any guarantees in place something is wrong.
2/1/2014 9:28:53 AM
Wolfie says:
That's the bank's choice to take a personal guarantee on their loan to you. Nothing to do with the government.
2/2/2014 10:37:08 AM
Eastender says:
If you are trying to run an enterprise that makes a product for which there is an inadequate market, then you are a bad businessman. Or. You know the politicians are desperate to show job growth and they are desperate to show their efectiveness at creating jobs, so you take advantage of incentives and huge government hanouts to create these jobs, which you know wont last since there is no market for your product. So the government gives you money to make a product for which there is an inadequate market. The politicians take credit for creating jobs, the money from government somehow disappears, the business goes bankrupt. Just a recycling of tax money with a majority of it skimmed into Someones pocket. I dont know how it works, but I'm sure Mr Buchanan is not suffering financially as a result of the bankrupcies.
2/1/2014 9:27:20 AM
countrycharmer says:
How can Buchanan Forest Products get away with this....hmmmm paying off politicians durning elections I say....Yes the middle class workers get audited on a regular basis and we have to pay pay pay....
Remember this when the next elections come up people!!!
2/1/2014 8:45:18 AM
cazam says:
There is a reason that tax specialist and consulting firms exist. There is a lot of money to be made/saved with all the tax loop holes that exist in our system. That is why corporations pay billions of dollars a year for these services and all we have is a minimal public staff and years of bureaucracy to correct a simple loop hole. By the time the loop hole is corrected these firms have found another. That is the reality. If the public was smart they would elect a government that would do away with revenue canada, charge a flat tax to all and hire the same consultants to probe the largest offenders. At the end of the day, you have to have money to make/save money.
2/1/2014 7:15:30 AM
windigo says:
If you lived in Nakina or Longlac, would you want those mills opened? I bet its not you needing a job in those towns. I guess its better to let the towns and people suffer.
Learn about how business works
1/31/2014 10:56:29 PM
windigo says:
A few comments
Eastender ---Yes if you go BANKRUPT the government will forget it.
cm punk no employee lost any money owed to them or their pension, educate yourself
deet percy The Buchanan group of companies is a group of separate companies, Hudson did not go bankrupt
Do you think the people working at the hudson mill want to work, or are mad at Buchanan being allowed to open the mill? Better to take away their jobs so Buchanan can't run
Buchanan saved the Terrace Bay mill. Right now it is running and employing lots of people. Left to the government it would be sold for scrap. You should thank him. No sawmills can survive without a pulp mill to buy the chips.
We need manufacturing in Ontario, the people in Terrace Bay know it. We cannot all work for the government, or at Walmart.
I truly wish people could educate themselves about business and economics
1/31/2014 10:47:49 PM
brooky says:
You really dont have a clue about any of this. Pretty much everything you said is wrong. Wheres the pension money for 20, 30 and even 40 year employees. It has simply vanished. Or are you going to pay it.
2/1/2014 12:18:26 AM
educator says:
Until the laws change and we start making share holders responsible for corporate debt, then this type of thing will continue.

I doubt we'll ever see the day where debt is assigned to the corporation and it's shareholders, what government is going to piss off their biggest backers?
1/31/2014 9:47:09 PM
BlondeJustice says:
What about the millions owed to the federal government for the income taxes, cpp & ei these companies deducted from employees paycheques & were never submitted? What about the millions owed for WSIB premiums. Are we the taxpayers not protected in any way? The shareholders of these private numbered companies benefitted financially. Why are they not held financially responsible? Why did our governments not protect these employees. Why did they keep throwing taxpayers dollars down this bottomless pit? Taxpayers and employees Hang your head in shame every MP, MPP and government employee who helped Buchanen Brothers et al continually rape honest taxpayers and employees!
1/31/2014 9:41:52 PM
brooky says:
Another one of lori's "Who else brings more money up here? I dare you to tell me who?" fairy tales. It was a nice photo op for Billy and Mikey at the time.
1/31/2014 9:38:00 PM
nvjgu says:
And they won't forgive the $800 Income tax I owe, that's sick.
1/31/2014 9:36:47 PM
tiredofit says:
And Bucky makes out like a bandit once again... how about they take him to court, recover what they can and give it to all the workers who were screwed out of their pensions and severance packages!!

This is a disgrace, plain and simple. Can someone please arrange to forgive all of our debt? but let us keep everything I own!
1/31/2014 7:29:51 PM
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Mcnews says:
This is absolutely disgusting but not shocking. I wonder what the final tally is on the amount of money that was owed to their hundreds if not thousands of employees who got robbed too. And to think Uncle Bucky is asking the province for more money right now to reopen mills in nakina and Longlac.
1/31/2014 7:17:00 PM
Eastender says:
So if I dont pay my taxes, can we just forget it and call it a forgiveable loan? I mean the government would hardly notice my paltry little debt when compared to 53 million of Buchanans.
1/31/2014 7:11:26 PM
Ranma says:
Yet if this was you or me, the government would take our houses, our cars, anything they possibly could to ensure their debt was paid back. But big business ALWAYS gets off scott free.

Still waiting for those bankers and wall street employees that caused the global financial crisis to be arrested and put in jail.
1/31/2014 6:07:29 PM
opinion13 says:
wow...just walk away...what a crime
1/31/2014 5:51:34 PM
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Over60 says:
And the government won't forgive loans to students!
1/31/2014 5:43:32 PM
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cm punk says:
So the government is going to fold their tent and say. "okay"?
I feel for those workers who lost their pensions and other monies owed to them.
He should never be in business again.
1/31/2014 5:03:42 PM
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deet percy says:
How can they operate the mill in Hudson after just walking away from 29 million they owe the government not to mention the thousand or so previous workers they screwed for another few million?
1/31/2014 5:03:03 PM
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