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TORONTO Dalton McGuinty is doing what Mike Harris could not privatizing the generation of electricity in Ontario, said Sid Ryan, president of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Ontario.

The announcement yesterday of new private power generation facilities was the first step in the piecemeal privatization of this vital public service, Ryan said. McGuinty is doing what Mike Harris could only dream of.

The previous Tory governments plan to privatize hydro was effectively stopped by a legal challenge launched by CUPE and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union (CEP). However, McGuinty accomplished the same thing by passing Bill 100, the Electricity Restructuring Act, Ryan said.

With that legislation, the government is withdrawing Ontario Power Generation from developing new facilities. It is all supposed to be done by the private sector, he said. Yesterday, they took the first step toward phasing out publicly-owned facilities and replacing them with private power generation. They are pulling the wool over the publics eyes in the name of cleaner air.

Given the supply targets the government has set, CUPE estimates public power generation will be reduced to less than one-third of all supply within two decades, Ryan said.

The inevitable result of privatization is higher electricity prices for consumers.


For more information, contact:
Sid Ryan, President, CUPE Ontario, 416-209-0066 (cell)
Pat Daley, CUPE Communications, 416-616-6142 (cell)