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Arnott: Report is indictment of Liberals

TORONTO - Wellington Halton Hills MPP Ted Arnott says the recent Auditor General’s report delivered a scathing indictment of the government’s mismanagement of a number of key policy areas.

Topping the list is the government’s handling of the green energy file and debt retirement charge on electricity.

“The Auditor General’s report validates what Tim Hudak and the PC caucus have been saying all along – the government has hopelessly mismanaged the energy file, resulting in higher hydro rates for all Ontarians,” said Arnott.

Auditor General Jim McCarter pointed out the government has pursued its green energy agenda with little regard for the impacts it would have on ordinary Ontarians. He concluded the government proceeded to make a massive investment in renewable energy while failing to conduct an in-depth evaluation of the economic and environmental effects of the investment.

McCarter reported that despite government claims the green energy sector will create 50,000 jobs, 30,000 of those will be temporary construction jobs. Furthermore, studies in other jurisdictions indicate that for every job created through renewable energy programs, two to four jobs are often lost in other sectors due to higher electricity prices.

McCarter also reprimanded the government for rushing into green energy contracts, such as the $7-billion Samsung deal, with little or no due diligence to determine if it was economically viable or cost-effective.

Similarly, the debt retirement charge has been used to collect $8.7 billion to pay off a debt that was only $7.8 billion.

McCarter said Minister of Finance Dwight Duncan is required by law to periodically outline how much debt remains, something the minister has failed to do.

“The [Dalton] McGuinty government owes Ontario taxpayers an apology,” said Arnott.  McCarter’s report can be found atauditor.on.ca.

 

December 16, 2011

 
 

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