An NDP Government In Ontario Would Make Slaying Soaring Hydro Bills ‘A Number One Priority’ – NDP Leader

By Doug Draper, Niagara At Large

Posted January 13th, 2017 on Niagara At Large

Niagara At Large attended a meeting this January 13th, 2017 between Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath, MPP Cindy Forster and Mat Botden, , president of the Welland Curling Club in Niagara, Ontario, where the crippling hikes in electricity costs for that not profit-organization and for virtually everyone else in the province were discussed.

At the end of that meeting, Horwath told reporters that if her party is elected to government in 2018, she will make getting hydro costs under control and affordable for residents and businesses across Ontario a number one priority.

Here is the media release that came out of that meeting

News from the Offices of Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath and Welland Riding MPP Cindy Forster

As Hydro Bills Continue To Climb, Welland Community Groups Are Suffering

Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath

Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath

Welland, Ontario  – Today Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath was joined by MPP Cindy Forster (Welland), as they visited the Welland Curling Club to discuss the impact of skyrocketing hydro rates on the club’s finances and future viability.

“Hydro rates are out of control in this province because of bad decisions made by the Liberal government to privatize more and more of our electricity system,” said Horwath. “Instead of looking after her friends on Bay Street, the Premier should take real steps to help businesses here on King Street, households across Welland, and families throughout the Niagara Region by making hydro affordable.”

Matt Botden, President of the Welland Curling Club, said that the club has already taken advantage of government grants to retrofit the facility with energy-efficient lighting and other initiatives designed to reduce electricity usage, but the cost of electricity bills is still climbing substantially.  “We’ve actually seen our usage go down while our costs keep going up,” said Botden. “We’re trying to keep the ice frozen, there is no way to work that into ‘off-peak’ hours.”

The Curling Club’s bills range from $5300 to $7300 per month during the 7 months of operation, with a total annual bill of over $45000 and increases of 30%. “The increasing electrical bill forces us to take other fiscal measures that impact the our ability to spend in the community,” said Botden.

Welland Riding MPP Cindy Forster

Welland Riding MPP Cindy Forster

“We continue to do the things needed to keep the club open and available for our community.  Community hubs like the club need to be protected, they are such important pieces of what makes a community like Welland a great place to live. As curlers we think this is the greatest sport for everyone from ages 6 to 96 and we want to be there to offer the opportunity for everyone to try the sport.” added Botden.

“I hear stories like Matt’s regularly from people all over the riding,” said Welland MPP Cindy Forster.  “Hydro rates are too high, they have been for a long time and Kathleen Wynne isn’t doing much about it.  In fact, she is making it worse by continuing to sell-off Hydro One which will drive rates even further up.”

The NDP Leader has been strongly urging the Liberal government and Premier to do the right thing and cancel their plan to sell-off Hydro One because it will only make electricity more expensive for families and put community institutions like the Welland Curling Club out of business.

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 “A politician thinks of the next election. A leader thinks of the next generation.” – Bernie Sanders

 

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2 responses to “An NDP Government In Ontario Would Make Slaying Soaring Hydro Bills ‘A Number One Priority’ – NDP Leader

  1. The Old CCF (NDP), Ideology I have always Followed and believed in lost too much in the last Ontario Election, an Election they could have won but failed miserably in presenting a viable platform that dealt with the priorities of the Common or Blue Collared folk. A situation that a Tommy Douglas would have presented with a dignity and honesty that would have made believers out of the undecided. This NOW ….NDP needs to re-adopt the Ideology of the foundering fathers of the Social Democratic movement and learn again to fight and defeat the Corporate Agenda of the Right Wing Corporate Conservative and Corporate Liberals parties whose only ideal is self enrichment at the expense of the poor. This is the only “HOPE” for the honest peoples of Ontario, British Columbia and the rest of Canada. May they all find atonement for the injuries imposed upon them in the past by Corporate owned and controlled Government Parties.

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  2. Here’s a 2017-Jan-09 Globe & Mail article explaining our high hydro rates:
    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/why-does-electricity-cost-so-much-in-ontario/article33453270/?service=mobile

    The article mentions several causes of Ontario’s higher & higher rates (+18% predicted in the next 2 years), including:

    – the poorly controlled Crown corporation that was Ontario Hydro (which misled 5 governments of 3 parties) for ~20 years,
    – the closing of cheap -but polluting- Nanticoke coal-fired generation,
    – the poorly run Green Energy Act (which produces <5-10% of our electricity, thus causing only a Small part of our high hydro rates)
    – the refurbishment of our failed CANDU Nuclear generators (which generate 61% !!! of our lights) instead of buying surplus Hydro Québec electricity.
    http://www.gridwatch.ca

    In short, to my mind, the last one is the Root cause of our high hydro rates.

    One failure of the article was that it did Not provide any Costing of Nuclear refurbishment versus buying from Hydro Québec. Here are later Letters to Editor that note that our Nuclear plants are run by expensive corporations and unions with strong political connections, and that we could save $~11B !!! if we retire our Nuclear plants when they reach their Bad After dates, instead of spending Billions to fix them.
    https://beta.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/letters/jan-10-power-politics-plus-other-letters-to-the-editor/article33556976/?ref=http://www.theglobeandmail.com&service=mobile

    Is the NDP joining the Green Party of Ontario in proposing that we do this? It would mean that we would again buy much of our electricity from a Crown corporation (public ownership), in addition to the many other sources that competition created from partial privatisation.

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