Public Values

Toronto council votes to keep power in public hands

Publicly-owned and delivered electricity has helped Toronto prosper.

Toronto council votes to keep power in public handsTORONTO, July 7, 2010 - The members of Toronto City Council listened to the people when they voted yesterday evening to keep Toronto Hydro as a publicly owned and operated asset, says the union representing about 1,250 Hydro workers.

"As this council nears the end of its term, it has sent a powerful message to those who will be elected on October 25, including our new mayor," said John Camilleri, president of CUPE Local One. "This council has recognized what the residents of Toronto already know - that we are all better off with public power.

"Publicly-owned and delivered electricity has helped Toronto prosper. Toronto Hydro keeps the lights on for everyone – and returns millions of dollars to our city every year. When we pay for electricity, we're paying ourselves because the City of Toronto is the sole shareholder in Toronto Hydro."

The motion approved by council reads: "Toronto City Council unequivocally indicate(s) that as Toronto Hydro is a necessary instrument to achieve Toronto's environmental, economic development and financial objectives, it is not in the public interest to sell all or any part of it."

"We want to thank Councillor Joe Pantelone for introducing this motion at executive committee and putting council on record in its support of public power," said Camilleri, noting that the motion came out of an executive committee discussion of a staff report on potential "monetization" of city assets.

"While the report warned councillors about the risks and pitfalls of selling all or part of assets, this council has stated that it will not even entertain the subject where Toronto Hydro is concerned," he said.

Posted: July 09, 2010

  Public services

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