Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Conservatives Say Wynne Involved in $230 Million Decisions to Cancel Gas Plants

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Conservatives Say Wynne Involved in $230 Million Decisions to Cancel Gas Plants

Article excerpt

Wynne linked to cancelled gas plants: Tories

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TORONTO - Ontario's opposition parties stepped up the pressure Wednesday on incoming premier Kathleen Wynne to agree to some form of hearings into cancelled gas plants in Oakville and Mississauga, which cost taxpayers at least $230 million.

As Liberal campaign co-chair in 2011, Wynne was involved in the politically-motivated decisions to cancel the two energy projects to save Liberals seats in the suburbs west of Toronto, said Progressive Conservative critic Rob Leone.

"With complete disregard for taxpayers, Wynne treated public funds as if they belonged to the Liberal party, and now taxpayers are left with the bill," Leone told reporters.

The Liberals pointed out Wynne's name was absent from a list of 18 names the Conservatives released last fall of people they wanted to testify at committee hearings into the gas plants.

While the Tories are demanding committee hearings into the cancelled gas plants right after the legislature resumes Feb. 19, the New Democrats want a full-blown public inquiry.

The ball is clearly in Wynne's court, said NDP Leader Andrea Horwath: agree to either committee hearings or a public inquiry into the decisions to scrap the gas plants and move the projects to southwestern and eastern Ontario.

"One way or another, the people deserve the answers and it's up to Ms Wynne to decide which way that's going to happen," Horwath told reporters.

"It's a choice that she's going to have to make."

Wynne wouldn't address the issue during an interview with The Canadian Press Wednesday, and said she wants to have talks with the opposition party leaders on a wider range of topics.

"The fact that Andrea chose to talk about the gas plant issue and a public inquiry, that's her prerogative," said Wynne.

"She can begin with whatever subject she chooses, but I'm going to be looking for a broad discussion of issues. …

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