QUEEN’S PARK – The Liberal government has reversed years of opposition to the sale of Hydro One, purely to pay for its scandals and irresponsible management of Ontario’s finances, PC Interim Leader Jim Wilson said today. “In 2002, Dalton McGuinty said that “when you turn a natural public monopoly over…it is the consumer who ultimately pays the price. Rates would go up… What would possess the government, I mean any government, to sell [this] asset”, Wilson quoted in the Legislature today.
Wilson asked the Premier “why are you selling a majority stake in Hydro One when you said yourself that you can’t guarantee that hydro rates won’t increase as a result?” He noted that even with OEB oversight customers are already facing a 42 percent increase over 5 years and further asked, “if you can’t guarantee that the sale of a majority in Hydro One won’t increase rates any higher, why on earth would you expose the hardworking people of Ontario to even more hardship?”
McGuinty was not the only Liberal to oppose selling Hydro One. In 2012, former Energy Minister Chris Bentley said that the whole asset needed to be kept in public hands so that it could work for families and businesses. Obviously, families and businesses are no longer a Liberal priority if a sale of a majority in Hydro One would “expose the hardworking people of Ontario to even more hardship,” stated Wilson.
Finally, Wilson said that the government was “not only giving up majority control, but taking $4 billion that by law is supposed to be used to pay down hydro debt and lead to lower electricity prices for everyone.”