Power Burnout – National Post Column re. Ontario’s Debt Reduction Charge

This column, published May 14, 2010, reprinted here from the National Post, discusses the misappropriation of funds collected from Ontario electricity ratepayers for the purpose of eliminating the liabilities left over from the insolvency of the former Ontario Hydro. The Ontario government’s lack of transparency in reporting on electricity financial issues is highlighted.

One Comment

  1. Your synopsis was about as clear and concise as it could be under the circumstances. I think that the problem of communicating the issues concerning OEFC (lack of accountability or transparency, neverending fees/taxes, debt pushed out further and further) is that OEFC,OPG,etc. are small in the overall scheme of Ontario’s poor government. In fact, some people might assume that because the DRC has not increased from $0.7/kwh (unlike the rest of the hydro bill), that it is fine. Only a few Hydro historians understand that they are still being lied to. Most people are worn out from increasing deficits, higher taxes and user fees, and no transparency from McGuinty’s government. As has been shown, the Conservatives and NDP cannot be trusted with the Hydro file either. I’m sorry to be so gloomy, but unless there are legal or regulatory channels to pursue, I think the province will feel free to deceive,cheat, steal, etc. from ratepayers and ultimately, taxpayers.

    OPG has been gaming the system since the 1999 bailout, starting with a lowball valuation of their assets (which reduced the cash flows required from their operations-requirements which were nonetheless missed). They viewed the bailout as a fresh chance to build their empire unencumbered by the mountain of debt they had already dumped on taxpayers, and never intended to implement the orderly liquidation envisaged in the official restructuring plan.

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