A report from the province’s new financial accountability officer is warning that the majority sale of Hydro one will ultimately have a negative impact on Ontario’s finances.
Stephen LeClair’s report, his first to the legislature suggests that although an improvement in the budget would be seen in the first year following the initial sale of 15% of the utility, the impact will ultimately be negative once the the Liberals sell the 60 per cent of Hydro One they plan to put on market.
According to LeClair”a partial sale will mean an ongoing loss of income to the province, because the government will receive less of the share of net income from Hydro One, and lose the proportion they currently receive in lieu of federal corporate income tax.”
He estimates that the total value of Hydro One is somewhere between $11 billion and $14.3 billion, and says based on that, a 60 per cent sale would generate $6.8 billion to $8.9 billion, “a wider and somewhat lower range” than the government’s estimates.
However he says that he can’t tell how the government came up with its valuations for Hydro One because the Liberals won’t tell him their methodology, calling this disappointing.
He added that without knowing how they made their calculations, “it is not possible” for him to say one way or the other if the partial sale will aid in the elimination of a $10.3 billion deficit by 2017-18 as promised.