Friday, May 11, 2012

Tim Hudak goes to Belleville

And here's a headline he garnered as a result of a town hall he held on Thursday: "Hudak's plans to kill FIT panned." He promised to do away with the feed-in-tariff program and called it a "scam," in fact. A scam. Hudak's position on green energy and doing away with the FIT is not news, but the mayor's reaction is:
Belleville currently has a handful of solar projects including one at the Quinte Sports and Wellness Centre.

That solar farm — located on the Cannifton Road sports centre — is expected to generate $7 million in revenue over 20 years.

Mayor Neil Ellis, who attended Hudak’s speech, said the program has been a boon to the city.

“When you look at the whole program, municipalities didn’t buy into it,” Ellis said. “Belleville, I believe, was the first municipality to get a big FIT contract and we were able to deliver it and now we’re (seeing) the benefit.”

The mayor said the program has been revamped since it was initially launched and, looking at the price of nuclear plants, governments must be sustainable. Generating revenue through solar energy is one means to do so, he said.

“I think Mr. Hudak isn’t against green power, he’s against the high costs that are paid by to providers or end users. I think if we could have some type of industrial adjustment ...” he said, alluding to a suggestion by the Conservative party leader.
The mayor's being diplomatic there at the end about Hudak. Because it sure sounds like the program has worked out fairly well for Belleville. If Hudak had his way, these solar projects that will bring in revenues to the community never would have gotten off the ground.

The report notes Hudak's going to be issuing a "white paper" on ideas he's hearing as he campaigns is travelling around the province. Maybe he should be listening to people like the Belleville Mayor and not be so absolute with his anti-green energy plans.