We have confirmed that Bill 19 will be before legislative committee again tonight. Very little notice was provided (again!) and this will be the second round of committee hearings on the issue. It creates another good opportunity to put pressure on the government to listen to the many voices opposing Bill 19 and the carve out of PowerSmart from Manitoba Hydro. We are asking citizens to show support by attending tonight’s meeting, if possible.
Thank you to those who signed onto our petition to save PowerSmart! Over 300 people signed up in less than a week with a raft of supporting comments that show how committed citizens are to PowerSmart. There is still time to get on board, click here to sign the petition and add your comments.
We hope to see you at the committee meeting this evening.
Committee meeting details:
Standing Committee on Legislative Affairs – Bill 19
Tuesday, May 23, 2017 at 6:00 pm
Room 255 Legislative Building
(free parking available on site)
Good news! Our recent activities have opened a window of opportunity to stop Bill 19 but we need help getting to the next step.
As posted on our website last week Bill 19 has been delayed at the committee stage by MLA’s who oppose it. If passed, Bill 19 will become law and will remove PowerSmart from Manitoba Hydro. It may still be possible to stop the bill if enough people contact government about it. We are asking all of concerned ratepayers and citizens to get involved and help save PowerSmart. Feel free to share this message with friends and family. The more people that speak up the better.
To assist with contacting government we have created a Save PowerSmart petition on Change.org. If you sign the petition email messages will be automatically sent to Premiere Pallister, Minister of Crown Services Ron Schuler and the Manitoba Progressive Conservative Caucus.
Alternately you can contact Premiere Pallister or Minister Schuler directly by email or phone to let them know PowerSmart should stay in Manitoba Hydro. Their contact information is below. You can also let your local MLA know how you feel; look up and contact information is available here.
|MINISTER OF CROWN SERVICES
Manitobans deserve good public services like the energy efficiency programs currently offered through Hydro.
We are pleased to report a temporary win on this issue! With a scant 48 hours notice to speakers, the committee hearing for this bill took place on May 11, 2017 at 6pm. President Chris Mravinec spoke to Bill 19 along with Kevin Rebeck (MFL) and four others. All presenters opposed the bill for varying reasons. These were former Hydro execs, retired engineers, and others that have been critics of the NDP’s handling of Hydro in the past. However, on this issue at least, we were in agreement. Bill 19 is not ready to be enacted into law!
The big surprise of the night was Steven Fletcher, PC MLA from Assiniboia, who effectively filibustered the whole committee meeting after the presentations. He is deeply opposed to the legislation and essentially used his parliamentary privilege to speak for 10 minutes on every clause in the legislation. The NDP caucus also assisted by raising objections of their own and giving him breaks between the 10 minute rounds. Mr. Fletcher made it clear he is prepared to continue his efforts to stop the Bill from passing so we are not sure where this will end up considering the current legislative session closes on June 1, 2017.
The committee will have to reconvene to get to a decision before Bill 19 can move to the third reading and become law. We don’t know when this will happen but will continue to track the issue and remain available to attend and defend on behalf of our members.
We created this short video to draw attention to the proposed removal of PowerSmart from Manitoba Hydro.
Our members are dedicated and work hard to deliver programs and services that save Manitobans money on their energy bills. Polling shows Manitobans want PowerSmart to stay with Manitoba Hydro.
Share this with your friends and family; let’s get the word out!