Hamilton councillor Sam Merulla’s Hydro One motion fails to shock

News Jun 11, 2015 by Kevin Werner Stoney Creek News

Hamilton councillor Sam Merulla’s motion requesting the province to stop privatizing Hydro One failed to generate any electricity among the result of council.

After a tumultuous debate at the June 10 council meeting, politicians voted 10-6 against the motion, with some arguing it was “premature” to talk about Hydro One.

Mayor Fred Eisenberger said the motion was irrelevant since the Legislature had already passed the bill that would sell off 60 per cent of Hydro One, and raise $4 billion to be used for transit projects, and another $5 billion would go towards paying down debt. The bill, contained in the Liberal’s budget, still needs royal assent.

“It’s not a full scale privatization,” said Eisenberger.

The Liberals are scheduled to start selling off Hydro One on the stock market later this year.

Once the bill is signed into law, public watchdogs, such as the auditor-general and Ombudsman will be unable to examine Hydro One.

Ancaster councillor Lloyd Ferguson says it was time to shock Hydro One up. He pointed out Hydro One already provides poor service to a portion of Ancaster residents. Ferguson said that electricity rates under Hydro One have gone up “exponentially,” while their salaries have become “ridiculous.”

“Stop assuming (Hydro One) are good operators,” said Ferguson. “They are spending too much time at Tim Hortons.”

Ferguson called Merulla’s motion as politically motivated in an attempt to support the NDP’s opposition to the privatization deal.

Glanbrook councillor Brenda Johnson also railed against the problems her residents in Glanbrook and Mount Hope have had dealing with Hydro One service. She said there are petitions being circulated among households requesting the city owned Horizons Utilities Corp. take over Hydro One customers in the suburban areas of Hamilton.

“(Residents) are frustrated, they are angry,” she said.

Mountain councillor Terry Whitehead blamed Hydro One for raising rates, which has pushed businesses to relocate out of Ontario.

“We have to do something differently,” said Whitehead, who voted against the motion.

Yet supporters of Hydro One saw a “slippery slope” to selling off portions of the public utility company. Rates, said Mountain councillor Scott Duvall, will rise inevitably. He called the sell-off “Hydro 407” after the Progressive Conservatives’ decision to sell Highway 407 to a foreign private company.

Merulla said there are a few essential services that must remain in public hands: fire, police, ambulance, water and electricity.

“I don’t understand the short-sightedness,” he said. “We are selling our future. This is a drastic mistake.”

Councillors who opposed the motion were Eisenberger, Maria Pearson, Johnson, Arlene VanderBeek, Robert Pasuta, Doug Conley, Tom Jackson, Whitehead, Ferguson and Aidan Johnson.

Councillors backing the motion were: Merulla, Jason Farr, Matthew Green, Scott Duvall, Judi Partridge, Chad Collins.

 

Hamilton councillor Sam Merulla’s Hydro One motion fails to shock

News Jun 11, 2015 by Kevin Werner Stoney Creek News

Hamilton councillor Sam Merulla’s motion requesting the province to stop privatizing Hydro One failed to generate any electricity among the result of council.

After a tumultuous debate at the June 10 council meeting, politicians voted 10-6 against the motion, with some arguing it was “premature” to talk about Hydro One.

Mayor Fred Eisenberger said the motion was irrelevant since the Legislature had already passed the bill that would sell off 60 per cent of Hydro One, and raise $4 billion to be used for transit projects, and another $5 billion would go towards paying down debt. The bill, contained in the Liberal’s budget, still needs royal assent.

“It’s not a full scale privatization,” said Eisenberger.

The Liberals are scheduled to start selling off Hydro One on the stock market later this year.

Once the bill is signed into law, public watchdogs, such as the auditor-general and Ombudsman will be unable to examine Hydro One.

Ancaster councillor Lloyd Ferguson says it was time to shock Hydro One up. He pointed out Hydro One already provides poor service to a portion of Ancaster residents. Ferguson said that electricity rates under Hydro One have gone up “exponentially,” while their salaries have become “ridiculous.”

“Stop assuming (Hydro One) are good operators,” said Ferguson. “They are spending too much time at Tim Hortons.”

Ferguson called Merulla’s motion as politically motivated in an attempt to support the NDP’s opposition to the privatization deal.

Glanbrook councillor Brenda Johnson also railed against the problems her residents in Glanbrook and Mount Hope have had dealing with Hydro One service. She said there are petitions being circulated among households requesting the city owned Horizons Utilities Corp. take over Hydro One customers in the suburban areas of Hamilton.

“(Residents) are frustrated, they are angry,” she said.

Mountain councillor Terry Whitehead blamed Hydro One for raising rates, which has pushed businesses to relocate out of Ontario.

“We have to do something differently,” said Whitehead, who voted against the motion.

Yet supporters of Hydro One saw a “slippery slope” to selling off portions of the public utility company. Rates, said Mountain councillor Scott Duvall, will rise inevitably. He called the sell-off “Hydro 407” after the Progressive Conservatives’ decision to sell Highway 407 to a foreign private company.

Merulla said there are a few essential services that must remain in public hands: fire, police, ambulance, water and electricity.

“I don’t understand the short-sightedness,” he said. “We are selling our future. This is a drastic mistake.”

Councillors who opposed the motion were Eisenberger, Maria Pearson, Johnson, Arlene VanderBeek, Robert Pasuta, Doug Conley, Tom Jackson, Whitehead, Ferguson and Aidan Johnson.

Councillors backing the motion were: Merulla, Jason Farr, Matthew Green, Scott Duvall, Judi Partridge, Chad Collins.

 

Hamilton councillor Sam Merulla’s Hydro One motion fails to shock

News Jun 11, 2015 by Kevin Werner Stoney Creek News

Hamilton councillor Sam Merulla’s motion requesting the province to stop privatizing Hydro One failed to generate any electricity among the result of council.

After a tumultuous debate at the June 10 council meeting, politicians voted 10-6 against the motion, with some arguing it was “premature” to talk about Hydro One.

Mayor Fred Eisenberger said the motion was irrelevant since the Legislature had already passed the bill that would sell off 60 per cent of Hydro One, and raise $4 billion to be used for transit projects, and another $5 billion would go towards paying down debt. The bill, contained in the Liberal’s budget, still needs royal assent.

“It’s not a full scale privatization,” said Eisenberger.

The Liberals are scheduled to start selling off Hydro One on the stock market later this year.

Once the bill is signed into law, public watchdogs, such as the auditor-general and Ombudsman will be unable to examine Hydro One.

Ancaster councillor Lloyd Ferguson says it was time to shock Hydro One up. He pointed out Hydro One already provides poor service to a portion of Ancaster residents. Ferguson said that electricity rates under Hydro One have gone up “exponentially,” while their salaries have become “ridiculous.”

“Stop assuming (Hydro One) are good operators,” said Ferguson. “They are spending too much time at Tim Hortons.”

Ferguson called Merulla’s motion as politically motivated in an attempt to support the NDP’s opposition to the privatization deal.

Glanbrook councillor Brenda Johnson also railed against the problems her residents in Glanbrook and Mount Hope have had dealing with Hydro One service. She said there are petitions being circulated among households requesting the city owned Horizons Utilities Corp. take over Hydro One customers in the suburban areas of Hamilton.

“(Residents) are frustrated, they are angry,” she said.

Mountain councillor Terry Whitehead blamed Hydro One for raising rates, which has pushed businesses to relocate out of Ontario.

“We have to do something differently,” said Whitehead, who voted against the motion.

Yet supporters of Hydro One saw a “slippery slope” to selling off portions of the public utility company. Rates, said Mountain councillor Scott Duvall, will rise inevitably. He called the sell-off “Hydro 407” after the Progressive Conservatives’ decision to sell Highway 407 to a foreign private company.

Merulla said there are a few essential services that must remain in public hands: fire, police, ambulance, water and electricity.

“I don’t understand the short-sightedness,” he said. “We are selling our future. This is a drastic mistake.”

Councillors who opposed the motion were Eisenberger, Maria Pearson, Johnson, Arlene VanderBeek, Robert Pasuta, Doug Conley, Tom Jackson, Whitehead, Ferguson and Aidan Johnson.

Councillors backing the motion were: Merulla, Jason Farr, Matthew Green, Scott Duvall, Judi Partridge, Chad Collins.