Opinion Letters

Letter: Time to protest

The plunge in oil prices in 2014 put 35,000 people out of work in Alberta, and in six months the suicide rate increased by 60 deaths.

In Ontario, in 10 to 12 years, we lost 400,000 jobs. Unlike Alberta, where job-loss suicides were due to the falling price of oil, Ontario’s job losses were due to increased energy prices, particularly electricity. The real price had fallen to 2.6 cents/kWh, on average, the corporate price to pay for the Green Energy Act and the 20-year Heritage energy contract for water-power generators like Orillia, which pushed water-power prices in rural Ontario to historic, unaffordable prices. The costs of the Green Energy Act and Heritage energy contract were charged to the MUSH sector (schools, colleges, hospitals, etc.). The continued escalation of these costs and consequent job losses will continue into the future.

Orillia’s decision to have Hydro One under its command will drive another, more dangerous nail into the economy and well-being of the people of Ontario. This should be stopped. The power corporation that was created in 2000, that was to use hydro revenue for the recreation site, may be accountable to city hall, but it is not accountable to the people.

The province is near bankruptcy through its electricity policy and needs to be re-evaluated now.

Mayor Steve Clarke would be well advised to refuse to play a greater part in having Hydro One come and suck more money out of out valuable social systems (MUSH sector and jobs).

The Americanization of our hospital affects everybody in the area, not just in Orillia. Cutting nurses and staff and adding surcharges cannot be remedied by ever-increasing volunteers and fundraising.

City hall will always scoop up more through the financial pathway of electricity charges on water and sewer bills, schools, universities, colleges, hospitals, etc. You will know it’s too late when we have American-style hospital costs.

Time to protest at Orillia city hall!

Maurice McMillan

Ramara Township

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