Consultant says First Nation will pay him $1.28-million for obtaining federal housing dollars

Gerald Paulin’s report found mould in almost every house on the reserve, as well as safety issues such as bad electrical work and improperly installed wood stoves, prompted outrage, national news stories and a $12.8-million commitment from the federal Indigenous Services department to replace and repair homes at Cat Lake. DAVID JACKSON/THE GLOBE AND MAIL

A Thunder Bay consultant whose exposure of the mouldy and unsafe housing in a remote Ontario First Nation persuaded the federal government to pay to replace homes on the reserve says he will receive $1.28-million for that work under a deal he negotiated with the chief and council.

The expected payout to Gerald Paulin and his company, Windsun Energy Corp., is raising eyebrows of federal officials and First Nations leaders, as well as shining a light on the lucrative deals being negotiated by some consultants. At the same time, Mr. Paulin’s efforts have brought attention to the housing crisis in many First Nations where families live in conditions that would not be tolerated elsewhere in Canada.

Mr. Paulin has already received $20,000 for a report on a $200,000 investigation he helped to arrange in December, 2018, of the homes in the Cat Lake First Nation, which recommended the demolition and replacement of 87 of 124 units.

That report, which found mould in almost every house on the reserve, as well as safety issues such as bad electrical work and improperly installed wood stoves, prompted outrage, national news stories and a $12.8-million commitment from the federal Indigenous Services department to replace and repair homes at Cat Lake. MORE

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