Hydro One signs deal to make $50 million payout to U.S. Energy Executives

Published on May 04, 2018

Kathleen Wynne once again missing in action as latest hydro rip-off occurs

Toronto — Ontario PC Leader Doug Ford today revealed the latest twist in Kathleen Wynne’s ongoing Hydro scandal. Buried in a series of US securities filings is evidence that the executives and board at Hydro One could be making $50 million worth of payouts to US energy executives.

“We’ve already learned that Kathleen Wynne allowed a network of connected hydro executives to pay themselves millions of dollars from your hydro bills, including the $6 million being paid to the Hydro One CEO,” said Ford. “Now we have learned that the $6 million dollar man — having helped himself to your money — has decided to spread even more of it around to his American friends.”

The US securities filings uncovered by the Ontario PC Party reveals that the Hydro One management and board have authorized more than $36 million in payouts to the top five managers of US energy company Avista as part of Hydro One’s attempt to acquire the company. An additional $14 million in payouts were authorized to another eight Avista executives as part of an arrangement that is explicitly referred to as a ‘Golden Parachute’.

“The worst part of this scandal is that Hydro One has no problem mailing out disconnection notices that threaten seniors and families who struggle pay the bills while, at the same time, paying out millions of dollars to executives and insiders,” said Ford. “And once again, Kathleen Wynne is nowhere to be seen. She could have stood up; she could have spoken out; she could have acted — but instead she chose to do nothing while this latest Hydro One rip-off took place.”

“Mark my words, we are going to clean up this hydro mess,” Ford concluded. “If you elect an Ontario PC Government on June 7, we are going to fire the $6 million dollar man and his cronies. And we are going bring your hydro bills down.”

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Backgrounder – “Golden Parachute” Compensation

In July 2017, Hydro One Ltd. signed a deal to acquire U.S. energy company Avista Corp. for C$6.7 billion in an all-cash deal that would create one of the largest regulated utilities in North America.

As part of the deal, Avista must file information with the US Securities Exchange Commission. The filing lays out what is expressly called “golden parachute” compensation for executives as part of the acquisition of Avista by Hydro One.  

The document shows the total compensation that executives at Avista could be eligible for in connection with or following the consummation of the merger:  

(https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/104918/000119312517301020/d430599ddefm14a.htm, Page 63).

Under these circumstances, the five top executives are eligible for $14,539,078 in severance and $36,134,745 in total compensation as “golden parachute compensation”.

An additional eight executives at Avista are eligible for $7,445,351 in severance and $14,381,001 in total “golden parachute compensation” as a part of the deal.

The total severance for Avista executives will be $21,984,429 and the total golden parachute compensation for Avista executives will be $50,515,746.