CUPE officially files lawsuit against Ontario’s premier over sale of Hydro One

 

Hydro One

Codi Wilson, CTV News Toronto
Published Wednesday, December 7, 2016 7:26AM EST
Last Updated Wednesday, December 7, 2016 8:33AM EST

Members of the Canadian Union of Public Employees will be holding a press conference this morning to discuss a lawsuit launched against Ontario’s premier regarding the sale of Hydro One.

In a statement emailed to CP24 Wednesday, CUPE spokesperson Sarah Jordison said the lawsuit was officially filed in court on Tuesday.

News of the lawsuit came in September when CUPE president Fred Hahn announced that lawyers representing the union served the premier, Minister Charles Sousa and Minister Glenn Thibeault with a 60-day notice of intent to sue.

“We don’t do this lightly,” Hahn said during a press conference at Queen’s Park in September.

“Public outcry against the sale has been vast and loud across the province… despite all of this, the premier and her government have insisted on selling off our public hydro system.”

During the news conference, Hahn suggested that the union is concerned about “exclusive” fundraisers the Liberals hosted with cabinet ministers for up to $10,000 a plate.

“A recent Globe and Mail investigation uncovered that invitations to and attendance at these exclusive events included the banks that had made nearly $60 million from the privatization of Hydro One so far,” Hahn said.

In a written statement emailed to CP24 from Thibeault’s office Wednesday, the energy minister addressed the allegations of misconduct.

“The Integrity Commissioner has already reported on this, and recently confirmed that there was no wrongdoing. Our government is and has continued to be focused on building Ontario up and helping people in their everyday lives – broadening the ownership of Hydro One is a crucial part of that plan,” the statement read.

“It allows us to significantly invest in infrastructure without raising taxes, increasing debt, or recklessly cutting public services.”

Hahn previously said that the goal of the lawsuit is to prevent the government from following through with its plan to sell off up to 60 per cent of the utility.

“Our goal with this lawsuit is to protect the people of Ontario and the ratepayers of Hydro One… and to keep majority shares in public hands,” Hahn added.

“The principal reason for filing this suit is to stop them from selling additional shares in our hydro system.”

Today’s press conference is scheduled to begin at 9:30 a.m. at Queen’s Park.