Liberals Already in Contempt of Ontarians Over Gas Plants: Wilson
14 September 2012
QUEEN’S PARK: The McGuinty Liberals are so desperate to hide the full cost of cancelling the Mississauga and Oakville power plants that they would risk breaking the law by obstructing MPPs from doing their jobs on behalf of outraged Ontario taxpayers, PC House Leader Jim Wilson said today.
Wilson made the comments following yesterday’s ruling by Speaker Dave Levac to censure Energy Minister Chris Bentley for blatantly and intentionally failing to disclose documents demanded by the Estimates Committee associated power plants in Mississauga and Oakville, which the McGuinty Liberals cancelled during the 2011 General Election for political purposes.
“The $190 million associated with cancelling the Mississauga power plant is only a start,” Wilson said. “Some reports suggest that cost of cancelling the Oakville plant as high as a billion dollars of Ontarian’s tax money – all to save a couple of Liberal seats.”
A formal complaint brought forward by Cambridge MPP Rob Leone was upheld after Speaker Levac found that Bentley withheld documents requested by MPPs investigating the Liberals over the power plant cancellations. This is the first step in the process of finding Bentley in contempt of the Legislature – an extremely serious sanction.
Despite protests from Opposition House Leaders, the Speaker recommended the issue be sent to the three party house leaders to resolve the impasse behind closed doors by September 24th. Wilson noted however, that “we believe that the solution is simple – hit print and table the documents. The Liberals obstructed the opposition at every turn with respect to obtaining these documents and the September 24th timeline just gives the Liberals more squirming room to bury the facts. The McGuinty Liberals are desperate to cling to power and have used numerous tactics to block investigations into scandals like the one at Ornge Air Ambulance and e-Health”.
Wilson went on to say “the Liberals had weeks to comply with an order of Ontarian’s elected officials but they refused. If we could have settled already we would have. After months of breaking the rules and flouting the law – what makes anyone think McGuinty and his Ministers are going to play by the rules now?”
“The Speaker’s ruling aside, this government has already been found in contempt in the court of public opinion for throwing taxpayer-funded money bombs at their own political problems.”
Scandals like these are proof the McGuinty Liberals lack the managerial competence to run Ontario’s $15 billion energy system. Their actions have led to skyrocketing hydro bills for households and local job creators. “For these reasons, Tim Hudak and the PC Caucus will continue to put forward bold, new and fresh ideas like our affordable energy white paper, to get Ontario working again,” Wilson said.
Wilson concluded “Ontarians are furious over the Liberals’ blatant misuse of taxpayers’ dollars to save their own political skins. The McGuinty Liberals – and cabinet ministers in particular – have a responsibility to be honest with taxpayers.
“The Liberals should be embarrassed by this breach of parliamentary power. What is so bad in those documents or who are the McGuinty Liberals protecting that it is worth breaking the law?”