Mistakes pile-up in Hydro One sale | What's Left

by Editors (What's Left) last modified 2015-07-28T11:06:01-04:00
The Liberals seem to be fumbling the Initial Public Offering of Hydro One. In a public letter this week, CUPE's lawyers asked the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) to review the government's interference with the legal obligations of Hydro One's board.

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The Board is required to protect the rights of all stakeholders, but the Liberals had eliminated the previous board's right to do exactly that. The letter says the process undermined shareholder rights and the stability of financial markets in Ontario.

In response to the letter, the Liberals changed their board process twice in five days, presumably after getting it wrong the first two times. Does anyone trust that they've now gotten it right?

This fumbling should not surprise anyone as the Liberals have a long history of failure when it comes to privatization. Think gas plants, Ornge, and the \$8 billion wasted through public-private partnerships.

In additon to their fumbling, the Liberal's privatization narrative contains more than a few inconsistencies. It jumps from saying that government revenue from high Hydro One is important, to saying that the loss of revenue from the sale is minor. It says rates cannot be regulated under public ownership, but lower rates can be effectively regulated if it is private. And, they claim to think it is not worth it for the province to own Hydro One, but it is a super valuable investment for the financial community.

In the end, Ontarians will be on the hook – paying too much for their power, getting lower quality service, and freezing in the winter while the rich get richer.

More: CUPE union claims Hydro One sale violates securities law

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