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Letter: Give taxpayers money they’re due

Dear editor: I am writing this letter to respond to a news story that was in The Western Star back on Tuesday, April 29, 2014: “Millions in excess power payments is to be refunded to power customers in Newfoundland.”

The taxpayers of Newfoundland are just fed up with the rate increase that will be given to Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro and now to Newfoundland Power. Newfoundland Power is going before the PUB looking for a 3.6 per cent rate increase for residential customers. Shame on the P.U.B if they allow those two companies to receive another rate increase after their big CEO and managers received a high bonus a few months ago. What a slap in the face to the taxpayers; it is our money.

Back in August 2013, Newfoundland Power announced that the total amount of money to be returned to power customers has continued to stand at $161.6 million, so how much is it now in 2015?

The pot of money is better known as the Rate Stabilization Plan surplus — as a result of cost savings at Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro. It is time for Premier Davis to get off his rear end and tell Newfoundland Power, Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro and the PUB to give this money that is due to the power customers. This has been ongoing since 2009. No rate increase until this money is paid out.

The taxpayers of Newfoundland and Labrador will be holding the money bag on the Muskrat Falls project. You hear certain people on open-line shows praising up former premier Danny Williams and what he did for Newfoundland and Labrador and getting Muskrat Falls started.

On Nov. 18, 2010, former premier Williams signed the Nalcor/Emera/Muskrat Falls deal. On Dec. 3, 2010, Williams resigned. Why did Williams step down? He put this project on other PC premiers’ shoulders to keep it going. Newfoundland and Labrador is in a financial crisis today because of Williams and this government. They spent like drunken sailors. People do no realize yet how much their light bills will be in four or five years — we could be paying around 30 cents a kilowatt, or a lot more.

Back in March 2012 the province had a provincial Heritage Fund of more than $2.7 billion in cash built up from “excess oil revenues” over the previous four years by the Williams administration. Do the taxpayers of this province know that this $2.7 billion all went to Muskrat Falls? Ask Premier Davis and the PC government if this is true. Is this why Bill 29 was brought in — to hide all the coverups by PC government?

Dave Kane, Stephenville Crossing

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