LISTEN: Oakville Mayor Testifies at Gas Plant Hearing
The quest for more gas plant documents continues at Queen's Park, as hearings into the Mississauga and Oakville cancellations move forward.
Mayor of Oakville Rob Burton answered questions from all three parties on Tuesday, including PC MPP Vic Fidelli, who requested copies of correspondence between Burton and the Premier regarding the Oakville gas plant.
Before this, Burton described his opposition to the plant and his 15-minute encounter at an Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) meeting with former Premier Dalton McGuinty. Burton said McGuinty had a "poker face" and couldn't tell if his his town's opposition registered with McGuinty or generated any sympathy to their cause.
The Mayor of Oakville says he doesn't understand why the cancellation cost anything given no planning approval or building permits were given.
Burton maintains was never told what the cancellation costs were in the first place but underlines "the costs for cancellations are far less than costs of health and safety of our community."
Burton notes the plant would have been placed close to 3,000 homes, nine schools, a hospital, a long-term care facility, the QEW and a rail corridor. Burton says the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) didn't want to alter its proposal for a greener facility which would address health and safety concerns.
He says he found out about the plans to scrap the Oakville plant when everyone else did - at a news conference in October 2010.
In question period, the Liberals were hammered with questions on cost by both the opposition Tories and NDP.
While Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli admitted the OPA's Oakville cancellation cost estimate of $40 million could be wrong, he vowed he doesn't have any updated numbers.
He continued to urge opposition to wait until the Auditor General's report looking into the matter.