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CanadaPremier Doug Ford says he’s not to blame after U.S. regulator zaps Hydro One takeover of Avista

17:55  06 december  2018
17:55  06 december  2018 Source:   thestar.com

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“ Doug Ford doesn’t seem to know what he ’ s talking about, which is troubling from a self-described sound businessman. Either that or he ’ s deliberately misleading Speaking for the Liberal government, Thibeault said “ Hydro One customers have not paid one penny to U . S . hydro executives at Avista .

U . S . regulators , concerned about the forced departures of Hydro One Ltd. chief executive Mayo Schmidt and the company’ s board in July, are now questioning whether the utility will try to make up for a possible decline in Ontario revenue by raising rates for customers of Avista Corp.

Premier Doug Ford says he’s not to blame after U.S. regulator zaps Hydro One takeover of Avista© Steve Russell Premier Doug Ford said Thursday he would “never apologize” for keeping his promise to the voters after he got rid of of Hydro One CEO Mayo Schmidt.

Premier Doug Ford insists he’s not to blame for U.S. regulators zapping Hydro One’s $6.7 billion takeover of Avista Corp., which will cost Ontario taxpayers tens of millions in cancellation fees and reduced share value.

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In his first public statement since Washington state rejected the Ontario utility’s proposed takeover of Avista citing political meddling by Ford’s government, the premier was unrepentant.

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Ontario Premier Doug Ford is in a standoff with independent directors on the Hydro One board Mr. Ford has his own favoured candidates to lead Hydro One , including current Toronto Hydro the midst of a .7-billion takeover of Avista Corp. The U . S . company runs electrical and gas transmission

Premier Doug Ford may not have outright lied this week about the cost of fulfilling his election promise to get rid of Hydro One CEO Mayo Schmidt. Further, critics are saying the turmoil could further hamper the company’ s growth by deep-sixing Hydro One ’ s planned .7-billion takeover of U . S

“Upon assuming office we acted decisively to keep our promise to Ontario voters,” Ford said Thursday, referring to his decision to get rid of Mayo Schmidt, the Hydro One CEO he derided as the “$6-million man” for his hefty salary.

“I will never apologize for keeping my promises to the voters. We are reducing hydro rates and, after years of neglect, finally putting the ratepayer first,” the premier said.

“Yesterday’s news from the U.S. doesn’t change our focus on bringing down hydro rates and protecting the people of Ontario,” he said.

“This is a deal that was put together by the former board and former CEO of Hydro One — a deal that did nothing to lower hydro rates for Ontario residents.”

Ford said ratepayers should not “take a back seat to foreign regulators.”

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And I have no idea what he ’ s talking about. Idaho ratepayers are awaiting the final word from the But the governance blowup at Hydro One caused regulators to vacate that hearing, triggering a delay Avista CEO Scott Morris had previously testified that such a foreign takeover would not be unique.

The ouster came as Ontario Premier Doug Ford fulfilled an election promise to shake up the utility’ s executive Hydro One ’ s planned merger with U . S . energy firm Avista passes another hurdle. “We expect the existing executive to continue pursuing this acquisition, but Avista ’ s regulators may

“Our government ran on a clear promise to clean up the mess at Hydro One. This included a firm commitment to renew the Hydro One senior leadership that had lost the confidence of Ontario ratepayers. The people of Ontario elected us to follow through on this promise,” he said.

The Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC) said the $6.7-billion deal was not in the public interest because it was “evident” decisions impacting Hydro One were influenced by “political considerations” in Ontario.

Read more:

Opinion | Jennifer Wells: Why Ford’s meddling in Hydro One may have short-circuited its billion-dollar U.S. takeover

Doug Ford’s Hydro One shakeup could risk $3.4-billion Avista acquisition

Opinion | Jennifer Wells: Hydro One’s takeover of U.S. utility sparks customer backlash: ‘This is an incredibly bad idea’

Schmidt’s departure was followed by the resignation of the entire board, which state regulators said suggested Ontario was willing to put political interests above those of shareholders.

Hydro One takeover of Avista scrapped by Washington State over Ford's political 'interference'

Hydro One takeover of Avista scrapped by Washington State over Ford's political 'interference' Washington state regulators say they have denied Hydro One Ltd.'s proposed takeover of Avista Corp., citing political interference in the Ontario utility by the Doug Ford government. The Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission says it found the deal, which valued Avista at $6.7 billion, to not be in the public interest after it became clear that the Ontario government was willing to interfere in the utility.

Perhaps it will be when future Premier Doug Ford has to backtrack on his promise not to cut municipal transfer payments to finance his 10-cent reduction in gas Or when the CEO of Hydro One cashes his next paycheque. Whatever the exact cause, chances are it won't take that long. Ford will realize very

Douglas Robert Ford (listen) (born November 20, 1964) is a Canadian businessman and politician serving as the 26th and current Premier of Ontario since June 29, 2018.

The cancellation deal will result in Hydro One paying a $103-million kill fee plus untold millions in lost share value since the province owns the largest stake in the utility.

In a joint statement Wednesday, Hydro One and Avista, which serves 400,000 electric and natural gas customers in eastern Washington, said they were “extremely disappointed” in the decision.

The UTC warned the risk of Ford’s government interfering in Hydro One’s affairs was “significant.”

“This, in turn, could diminish Avista’s ability to continue providing safe and reliable electrical and natural gas service to its customers in Washington,” the regulator said.

Hydro One is 47 per cent owned by the Ontario government after former Liberal premier Kathleen Wynne controversially sold off a majority share of the utility.

Both Ford’s Progressive Conservatives and Andrea Horwath’s New Democrats opposed the Liberal sell-off.

Robert Benzie is the Star’s Queen’s Park bureau chief and a reporter covering Ontario politics. Follow him on Twitter: @robertbenzie

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