One of the great successes of the Federal Conservative Government has been our championing of Canadian goods, products and services to the rest of the world. We have accomplished this by promoting Canada as a free-trading nation and the signing of a record number of international trade agreements. The irony of this accomplishment is that it is now easier to trade with some other countries than it is to trade with fellow Canadian provinces. With the goal of a healthier, stronger economy and job creation, Federal Industry Minister James Moore has announced our plan to modernize the 20-year-old Agreement on Internal Trade (AIT) between the provinces in line with current global economic realities. By improving the AIT, one of the first groups to benefit will be consumers with a greater choice of goods and services.
An example where consumers need better choice and service is in the Ontario electricity market. Renfrew County should be able to benefit from being on the Ontario, Quebec border. Rather than having to purchase electricity from the Ontario government default power monopoly, our power Local Distribution Companies (LDCs) should be able to choose to purchase cheap, abundant hydro electricity directly from Quebec or from a local supplier if the price is right. Consumers should be able to purchase electricity from a retailer without all the “green energy Act” add-on charges that cost more than the electricity portion of the bill. Ottawa River Power Corporation (ORPC) has a historic agreement to receive power from Quebec and better local management, contributing to it having the lowest power rates in the province.
Thank-you to all the residents of Renfrew-Nipissing-Pembroke who took the time to fill out my latest survey questionnaire “Should You Be Able to Choose Where You Buy Your Hydro From?” If you have not done so, please let me know your answer. Your opinion is important to me.
In being able to choose where you buy your power, Ottawa Valley residents who own a cottage, hunt camp or trailer that is on the grid could say no to the latest policy pronouncement from the Liberal party in Toronto to charge a monthly fee regardless if the power is turned on for the “privilege” of being connected to the grid. This is estimated by the Consumer Policy Institute to cause a 50% spike in cottage power bills in addition to all the other projected price increases! Now that the provincial election is over, only a strong Federal government can act as a counter-balance to cushion the ruinous policies that have led to the hollowing out of the manufacturing sector in Ontario, thanks to out of control provincial electricity bills that are being manipulated as a social experiment for items like uneconomical industrial wind turbines, rather than applying natural laws of supply and demand that competition would encourage.
The perverse aspect of this policy is that their reason for increasing costs is to “save” the environment, when now it will be cheaper to run a seasonal gas generator. So much for clean air! Only through having the freedom to choose, and having competition in the market place will consumers and the environment be protected.