QUEEN’S PARK – This morning, the Financial Accountability Office of Ontario released a report on its assessment of the financial impact of the sale of Hydro One. The report confirms what the Ontario PC Caucus, the public, and the business community have continued to stress to the government: the Hydro One fire sale is a bad deal for Ontarians.
The FAO projects that as a result of the fire sale, the province's fiscal situation would be worse than if they didn't sell Hydro One, in large part due to the revenue Hydro One currently brings in to provincial coffers. The fire sale represents a short-term gain in exchange for long-term pain.
Members of the Ontario PC Caucus stood in Question Period today demanding that the Wynne Liberals put an immediate stop to the fire sale of Hydro One.
“The actual proceeds from this Hydro One fire sale are very little. But it’s just enough to make your books look good for a couple years, bringing us to the next election. Then it all goes downhill for Ontario from there,” said PC Finance Critic Vic Fedeli, who noted the sale could cost the province approximately $700 million in revenue every year, and the net profit could be as low as $1.4 billion.
This morning it was also learned that the Financial Accountability Office requested additional cabinet documents on the sale of Hydro One, but the Liberal Government refused to turn them over.
“Once again this week, this government has proven it is anything but accountable and transparent,” stated PC Hydro One Critic Todd Smith. “Why do we keep running into information that the government doesn’t want the public to have? This government should commit to releasing all cabinet documents on the sale of Hydro One to the public.”
Leader of the Official Opposition Patrick Brown added, “Will the Premier admit that they have not been giving the people of Ontario the straight goods on the sale of Hydro One? The report also predicts that the Hydro One fire sale will impact ratepayers. Coupled with the OEB’s recent announcement that hydro rates will increase on November 1st, average Ontario families will continue to struggle to pay their hydro bills.”
Brown concluded, “The public does not support this fire sale. Ontario’s financial watchdog says the sale will deteriorate the province’s budget balance. The Wynne Liberals should do the right thing, and put an immediate stop to the sale of Hydro One.”