Campaign Research Ltd., which worked on George Abbott's leadership campaign got $167,800 to conduct those town hall telephone meetings on the tax.
Backbone Technology, which has worked for the Liberal party for 10 years, got $52,747 contract to do the HST website.
And Marc Andrew, Hansen's former aide, was paid more than $33,000 to provide "political advice" to Tom Syer, the head of the HST sales campaign, and help the independent panel that assessed the tax.
None of the contracts were tendered, the normal procedure for contracts worth more than $25,000.
Holman reports the government's response.
There is a simple test of the appropriateness of these contracts.
What would Christy Clark have said if the former NDP government had done the same thing? Would she have accepted the reasons for awarding $250,000 in contracts to friends of the government without competitive bids?
Or cried foul?