Canadian Manufacturing

Premier to testify at public hearings into cancelled gas plants

Kathleen Wynne says she wants to be open and transparent



TORONTO—Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne will testify under oath April 30 before a legislative committee studying her government’s decisions to cancel gas plants in Mississauga and Oakville.

It’s rare for a sitting premier to agree to appear before a committee, but Wynne says she has tried to make it clear since winning the Liberal leadership in January that she wants to be open and transparent.

Progressive Conservative house leader Jim Wilson says Wynne signed off on a cabinet document to cancel the Oakville gas plant, and he intends to question her about how much it cost.

Wilson says Wynne should have known the costs before she signed off on such a massive undertaking.

The CEO of the Ontario Power Authority will appear at the committee before Wynne today, and is expected to update the $40-million estimated cost for cancelling the Oakville gas plant.

The opposition parties predict the true cost of scrapping the Oakville plant will be hundreds of millions of dollars more than the Liberals have claimed, but an auditor’s report into the project won’t be ready until late summer.

The auditor already reported on the cancelled Mississauga gas plant and found it cost $275-million, $85-million more than the Liberals were admitting.

The Conservatives also moved a non-confidence motion in the minority Liberals over the cancelled gas plants, a move the other parties called a publicity stunt knowing the government will never call it for a vote.

“The motion will reflect the sadness, the anger and frustration of Ontario taxpayers that the Liberal Party is putting their own interests ahead of the interests of taxpayers, and that you chose to spend probably over $1-billion to cancel gas plants in Oakville and Mississauga,” said PC Leader Tim Hudak.

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