Sutherland calls for public meeting on potential sale of Essex Power shares



Deputy Mayor Ron Sutherland

Deputy Mayor Ron Sutherland

By Ron Giofu


Deputy Mayor Ron Sutherland is calling for a public meeting to discuss the potential sale of Essex Power shares.

Sutherland indicated he has been inundated with calls from concerned residents and believes their voices should be heard. He is “calling on council to set up a special public meeting at town hall to hear the voice of the taxpayers on this very important issue.

“As deputy mayor of the Town of Amherstburg, I have been swamped with calls from concerned taxpayers regarding the proposed sale of our Essex  Power Shares,” said Sutherland. “Essex Power is an important asset for the Town of Amherstburg.  Our shares in Essex Power give us control over the utility services in the core of the town.  Our Essex Power shares provide us with not only current but important future operating revenue.”

Sutherland said former Essex County warden Mike Raymond – also a former mayor of LaSalle – is in favour of Amherstburg keeping its Essex Power shares as is Alfie Morgan, professor emeritus from the University of Windsor.

“Several respected former elected officials are in favour of Amherstburg keeping it’s Essex Power shares,” stated Sutherland. “Our fellow shareholders in LaSalle, Tecumseh and Leamington, are all keeping their shares in Essex Power. “

Sutherland, who filed his nomination papers Jan. 31 to run for mayor in the Oct. 27 municipal election, believes the town would be making a mistake if council agrees to sell its shares in Essex Power to Entegrus Inc., a public energy distribution firm that is 90 per cent owned by Chatham-Kent.

“Amherstburg faces very tough financial problems right now.  Amherstburg’s financial problems will not be solved by making the same financial mistakes that were made in the past,” Sutherland believed. “Selling our shares in Essex Power will not make things better.  Selling our shares in Essex Power will make our financial problems worse. If we are going to fix our financial problems, we need to keep our shares in Essex Power.”

Town council passed a motion at a special meeting Dec. 20 to proceed with a study into the issue with a 90-day negotiating period also being created as a result of the motion. Entegrus is funding the study to the amount of $25,000.

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