Ontario Legislative Assembly Question Period – November 5th, 2015
Mr. Randy Hillier: My question is to the Attorney General. With four OPP investigations regarding Liberal misconduct; plus a multi-million dollar lawsuit by T. Boone Pickens against the IESO; and the US justice department investigation under the corrupt business practices act regarding NextEra, it appears your seatmate, the energy minister, is complicit in many of these cases. The minister knows that the US justice department is investigating US companies that are promising Ontario municipalities money in exchange for municipal support which financially benefits these very same companies. It appears that the Attorney General’s seatmate is facilitating and encouraging this financial impropriety under the Green Energy Act between foreign businesses and our municipal partners.
Speaker, does the Attorney General condone foreign businesses offering bribes on condition that the municipal government passes a resolution to support and promote those businesses?
Hon. Madeleine Meilleur: Minister of Energy.
Hon. Bob Chiarelli: Mr. Speaker, the member will know that in different sectors in Ontario—for example, in the municipal sector, in the development industry—municipalities, in fact, can obtain benefits from developers who are building subdivisions, apartment buildings etc. There are provisions in the Municipal Act that enable that to happen. They work extremely well.
In this particular case, for a party that has been complaining that they were being ignored in the renewable energy sector, we have created a process that gives them tremendous say in whether they go forward or not. We do have a point system that enables our proponents to negotiate with the municipality for particular benefits. It’s working extremely well, and in that—
The Speaker (Hon. Dave Levac): Thank you.
Hon. Bob Chiarelli: I’ll do it in the supplementary.
The Speaker (Hon. Dave Levac): I’m sure you certainly will.
Before we progress, I’d like to caution the member not to get too close to making an accusation that he knows would be unparliamentary. Carry on.
Mr. Randy Hillier: Speaker, again to the Attorney General: Although the energy minister may condone this—this I’m asking to the Attorney General—in my riding, Addington Highlands has been offered millions of dollars if they help Liberal-friendly NextEra score hundreds of millions of dollars in contracts from the IESO. The deal requires the municipality to act in a manner contrary to the expressed public interest and allows foreign-owned NextEra to squeeze more money out of taxpaye
These aren’t typical community vibrancy funds. They coerced municipal governments to enact resolutions that promote foreign-owned companies.
Speaker, why does the Attorney General, Ontario’s chief law officer, allow and permit her seatmate to tarnish Ontario’s reputation and bring the administration of law into disrepute? Will the Attorney General initiate an investigation into these corrupt practices?
Hon. Bob Chiarelli: Mr. Speaker, the member is so disrespecting rural municipalities, it’s beyond belief. What he is saying, and I challenge him to identify the councils and the councillors that are being bribed in the province of Ontario—
The Speaker (Hon. Dave Levac): Order.
Hon. Bob Chiarelli: I challenge the member to identify the councils and the councillors, who have passed unanimous resolutions, that are being bribed. He is showing so much disrespect for municipal councils in rural Ontario, it’s beyond belief. He should be apologizing to every single rural municipality in the province of Ontario.