Dismiss OPA Chair John Beck over conflict of interest: Hampton



    TORONTO, Aug. 15 /CNW/ - NDP Leader Howard Hampton is calling for John
Beck's immediate dismissal as Chair of the Ontario Power Authority and says
his appointment is more proof that Dalton McGuinty is putting private
interests and nuclear power ahead of working families and Ontario's
environment.
    "Dalton McGuinty has put a person with a vested interest in more nuclear
power in charge of decisions about Ontario's energy future that will have a
huge impact on today's working families. It's a blatant conflict of interest.
The fox is guarding the chickens. Beck has got to go," Hampton said.
    Today's Toronto Star reveals that John Beck, the CEO of Aecon Group Inc,
was quietly appointed chairman of the Ontario Power Authority - the government
body that procures electricity generation and develops Ontario's energy plans.
Aecon is an active participant in Ontario's energy market - a fact Beck
himself noted on June 19, 2007 when he told Aecon shareholders, "We have a
hand in building, expanding and maintaining virtually every form of power
generating facility used in the province - from the early hydro facilities to
natural gas and co-generation plants, to the Bruce Nuclear facility."
    Contrary to McGuinty Government claims, Ontario's NDP has been raising
concerns about Beck since he was first appointed to the OPA board. On
December 7, 2005, Hampton asked McGuinty in the Legislature, "Can you explain
how the chief executive officer of a company with such an obvious vested
interest in the expansion of nuclear power qualifies as an independent,
impartial member of an organization charting Ontario's future electricity
course?"

    

SOURCE: http://hansardindex.ontla.on.ca/hansardespeaker/38-2/l030a-727.html This is not the first questionable appointment made to the Power Authority, McGuinty has also installed former Liberal fundraiser Jan Carr as CEO when he established the body in 2005.

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For further information: Marion Nader, (416) 325-2601

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