Ford’s anger at CEO pay sparks talk of selling off Hydro One
Despite all the evidence that privatization has nearly tripled hydro rates in Ontario, The Toronto Star reports that Doug Ford is considering selling off 100 per cent of Hydro One in order to get out of his promise to fire the utility’s CEO.
“The premier-designate blustered over [Hydro One CEO] Mayo Schmidt’s $6.2-million pay packet, dubbing Schmidt the $6-million man,” writes Star business columnist Jennifer Wells. “[But] When Doug Ford set his sights on the CEO of Hydro One with an off-with-his-head declaration, the first question posed was the obvious one: can he do that?”
The short answer is: yes, but it will cost millions more in severance pay. So privatization cheerleaders are now taking the opportunity to push the new premier to finish what Wynne started—sell off 100 per cent of Hydro One so that Ford won’t seem responsible for sky-high hydro prices.
“And so the battle over the future of Hydro One begins,” Wells writes. “Or more correctly, begins again.”
The CBC reports that the New Brunswick government has done a “major about-face” on its plan to privatize food and laundry services in the province’s hospitals.
The government had been planning to privatize the food services to a multinational called Sodexo, but widespread outcry from communities and unions prompted a change of heart.
The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that three people have lost their jobs because they criticized the quality of privatized coroner’s services.
The firings came after the employees told a County Commission meeting that the county would save money and offer better service if it didn’t renew its privatization contract and instead brought the coroner’s office back under public ownership and management.
One of the fired employees said coroner’s office had provided “three years of shitty service” since the county privatized it.
Every week, OPSEU’s We Own It campaign publishes a newsletter called The We Own It Weekly. It’s a round-up of news and information about the growing movement to protect communities from privatization.