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Company at centre of $25M Bluenose II boondoggle awarded new contract for Canada’s navy

The Bluenose II waits in port in Lunenburg, N.S. on May 28, 2014.
The Bluenose II waits in port in Lunenburg, N.S. on May 28, 2014. Andrew Vaughan/The Canadian Press

The company at the centre of the costly six-year restoration of the Bluenose II schooner has been awarded a contract by the federal government — to the tune of $12.2 million.

The American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) has been contracted to ensure that environmental standards are met onboard the Royal Canadian Navy’s non-combatant fleet.

“The government is focused on ensuring our public dollars go farther and are used smarter,” reads a press release about the new contract.

READ MORE: Classification agency’s late introduction blamed for Bluenose II delays

It’s a five-year contract, with four additional five-year options. Part of the contract includes a stipulation that 80 per cent of all work is to be done in Canada.

ABS was previously hired by the Nova Scotia government to classify and inspect the Bluenose II schooner as it underwent reconstruction.  The company was central to each decision made on the ship’s $25-million design and replacing the rudder of the iconic Canadian ship.

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The original 2009 cost estimate for the restoration project was $14.4 million

READ MORE: Bluenose II rudder replacement underway, cost estimate remains at $25M

ABS was in charge of the decision to fit the boat with a massive steel rudder, which required a $700,000 custom-built hydraulic steering system, that was eventually deemed too heavy for operation.

The report warned the rudder would change the shape of the vessel and shorten its life.

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