Schreiner: Liberals should say no to Hydro One’s proposed merger with Avista

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In response to news that Hydro One’s acquisition of Avista passed another hurdle, Green Party of Ontario Leader, Mike Schreiner, said the following:

“The Ontario government must use its position as the largest shareholder in Hydro One to say no to its proposed merger with Avista Corporation.

Ontarians breathed a sigh of relief when we got off of coal in 2014. It was a moment to be proud of in the fight against climate change. But now Hydro One is getting back into the coal game, acquiring a US company with a major stake in one of the country’s largest coal-fired generating plants. How can the Liberals claim to be climate leaders when they’re happy to get into bed with big polluters south of the border?

The disastrous privatization of an important public asset has given rise to a multinational corporation whose bottom line is making profits for private shareholders, whether this means higher bills for the people of Ontario or pumping more greenhouse gas pollution into the atmosphere. By selling ownership in Hydro One, Ontario can no longer keep our hands clean from dirty energy projects that worsen the climate crisis. This is wrong.”

Greens would impose hard cap on CEO salaries

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QUEEN’S PARK — The revelation that Hydro One board members voted to raise their salaries amidst a downturn in share price illustrates the extent of Liberal mismanagement on hydro.

“This is a by-product of Kathleen Wynne’s privatization boondoggle. By selling off Hydro One, the Liberals have not only given away an important public asset, they have allowed the worst impulses of the private sector to contaminate what should be a public good,” said Green Party of Ontario Leader, Mike Schreiner.

“Greens would cap executive salaries for those in the Ontario Public Service at double the Premier’s salary,” added Schreiner. “People putting their expertise in service of Ontarians should be compensated fairly, but we absolutely need a firm cap to prevent outrageous raises like this.”

Wynne’s argument that privatization was needed in order to fund transit is another band-aid solution from a government that has made a habit out of using shoddy accounting and cheap ploys to woo voters.

“The sale of Hydro One was the height of short-term thinking from the Liberals – slow the bleeding today by creating deeper wounds tomorrow,” said Schreiner. “Their unFair Hydro Plan will do the same in the near future.”

Meanwhile, Doug Ford can sloganeer, hold rallies and pretend to be a champion for the people, but the little we know about his vision for Ontario makes clear his true colours.

“A totally unnecessary tax cut for the wealthiest corporations and a shady backroom deal to open up the Greenbelt for profit-hungry developers – these are not the actions of a politician acting for the people,” said Mike Schreiner.

Greens won’t mortgage the future to fund essential social services or transit projects. We are the only party putting forward honest revenue generating solutions such as road pricing and a fair public return on our natural resources.

“Amidst all of the mud-slinging and name-calling from the status quo parties, the Greens are showing Ontarians how we can do politics differently with a hard cap on CEO salaries and real solutions to raise money for better services for people,” said Schreiner.