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No windfall for us

Re: the May 7 article announcing $5.5 million invested by private citizens through the Community Economic Development Investment Fund (CEDIF) in a wind energy project.

The article states 65 per cent of that money will be reimbursed to the investors through tax credits from the provincial government under the terms of the CEDIF program over a 10-year period.

So, in fact, 65 per cent of $5.5 million (roughly $3.6 million) of taxpayers’ money is being turned over to the private sector by the provincial government.

The article also analyzes the rate of return of the project. The company in question benefits from the Community Feed In Tariff (COMFIT) program. Under this program, CEDIF companies, and certain other selected entities that produce energy from alternate sources, benefit from an enhanced per-kilowatt-hour rate paid for the power that they produce. NSP and its customers are being forced to pay an inflated rate for the electricity.

So, the Nova Scotia government is making a gift of millions of dollars of taxpayers’ money to a select few who can afford to buy shares in one of these companies and then forcing Nova Scotia Power ratepayers to subsidize the profits these shareholders enjoy through inflated power rates. Sounds like a good deal for some of us, but not for most of us.

Peter Lavell, Halifax