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McGuinty government rejects Ontario PC bill to restore local decision making powers on industrial wind farms

QUEEN’S PARK – Efforts by Tim Hudak and the Ontario PC Caucus to give local residents a voice on the construction of massive industrial wind farms in their community were thwarted today, as Hudak as his Caucus colleagues stood alone in voting in favour of legislation to restore local decision making powers to cities and towns.

Those powers were stripped when the McGuinty government passed The Green Energy Act in 2009, allowing industrial wind farms – the height of 40-storey buildings – to be placed in communities across the province without the approval of local councils or residents. A proposed 77-turbine project planned for West Lincoln and Wainfleet is being described as the largest wind farm in all of Canada. Despite strenuous objections from local families and municipal councils, those plans continue to plough ahead.

Todd Smith, Ontario PC MPP for Prince Edward-Hastings brought forward legislation this week – called The Local Municipality Democracy Act – that would have ensured local families’ concerns on industrial wind farms were no longer ignored. Regrettably, both the McGuinty Liberals and the NDP voted against letting local residents, businesses and municipal councils have a say in where these massive construction projects are located.

QUOTES:

“I believe in local decision making. I believe that local families, businesses and municipal councils know what’s best for you and your neighbourhoods – not Dalton McGuinty and a bunch of bureaucrats.”
–Tim Hudak, Ontario PC Leader

“Dalton McGuinty’s approach is arrogant. It’s unfair. It’s undemocratic. And we’re going to continue to fight to put a stop to it. We will continue to be the voice of concerned communities until they once again have a say in what happens in their own neighbourhoods.”
–Tim Hudak, Ontario PC Leader

QUICK FACTS:

Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak and members of the Ontario PC Caucus joined concerned Ontarians and the Mayors and Aldermen from West Lincoln and Wainfleet at a rally in front of Queen’s Park to call for the restoration of local decision making authority on industrial wind farms.
There are currently two wind turbine projects planned for West Lincoln and Wainfleet, including the Niagara Region Wind Corporation plan to install 77 turbines between the two municipalities.
It is being referred to as the largest wind farm in all of Canada.
To date, 79 municipalities across Ontario – including West Lincoln and Wainfleet – have passed resolutions calling for the restoration of local municipal powers, or passed moratoriums on wind farm projects in their communities.