Tuesday, November 29, 2011

McGuinty to listen on Tory MPP's wind farm bill - Canadian Press

The Canadian Press
Date: Monday Nov. 28, 2011 4:46 PM ET

TORONTO — Premier Dalton McGuinty is promising to listen to a Progressive Conservative who wants to restore local powers to oppose green energy projects.

Tory Todd Smith has introduced a private member's bill that would give municipalities more say over new wind and solar projects.

He says many of the projects are being built over the objections of local residents.

McGuinty says he'll listen to see if there's anything his government can do to strengthen the program and ensure that communities feel they have a real say.

But he says it will also be very challenging to secure international investment if every Ontario community has different rules on green energy projects.

Smith says the bill would remove a section of the Green Energy Act that stripped municipalities of their decision-making powers.

He says he's hoping the New Democrats and some Liberals will support the bill, because many of the municipalities they represent are clamouring for the change.

Even if both opposition parties support the bill, it may never become law.

The minority Liberals still control which bills come up for third and final reading, and may decide to block it even if it passes second reading.