内容

华裔社区日渐对自由党不满 高额电费仅为冰山一角
Dissatisfaction over Liberals’ overspending grows in the Chinese community

随着安省保守党在本月初举行的省议员补选中一举拿下自由党长期把持的士嘉堡-红河选区,自由党省府也了解到了当地许多选民的不满。在一个以华裔人口为主的选区里,什么也没有“钱袋子问题”更能深深触动选民的神经。

The Liberals have heard a lot from voters in Scarborough-Rouge River – as the long-term Grit fiefdom fell to the Tories in a by-election earlier this month.  In a riding that is largely populated with Chinese demographic, nothing hits hard to voters unless it hits their pocketbook.

虽然此次补选之际正值炎炎夏日,整日整夜的空调费令居民电费额飙升,但实际上安省消费者的电费开支涨速已经连续多年超过通胀水平。

While the election was held at a time when residents faced skyward hydro bills during a sticky hot summer that needed non-stop air conditioning, consumers’ hydro costs have increased above the level of inflation for years.

来自士嘉堡的华裔刘女士表示:“电费已经占到我的家庭开支的很大一部分,为此我们在一些酷暑难耐的日子里也不得不调高空调温度,甚至将空调彻底关掉。”

“Hydro costs have become such a big part of my family expenses, to the point that we have to set the air conditioner to a higher number or even turn it off altogether during some hottest summer days,” says Ms. Liu, a Chinese Canadian from Scarborough said. 

实际上,还有许多加拿大华人也像刘女士一样希望通过节能举措来降低不断飙升的能源成本。但是,由于电力需求下降亦会导致能源费率上涨,因此这样的努力未必能够奏效。按照现行的电费制度,消费者不仅要为消耗更多电量多掏腰包,在电力需求总量下降和电费上涨时也不得不支付更高的费用。

In fact, Liu was just one of the many Chinese Canadians who want to make conservation efforts to save skyrocketing energy costs. But these efforts are unlikely to be effective, as reduced electricity demand would cause the hydro rate to increase. Under the current hydro system, consumers do not only have to dig deep into the pockets when they consume more electricity, but also when overall demand drops and the rate increases. 
 
安省保守党赢得此次补选亦显示出华裔社区对自由党在经济政策问题上所持的立场日渐不满。身为《大中报》的编辑,我在接受CBC采访时亦表达了华裔社区对自由党政治议程的看法。CBC在报道中引述我的话称:“保守党补选胜利显示出华裔社区对许多问题,尤其是对自由党‘挥霍纳税人的金钱’和‘过度超支’之做法的不满之情。”

The PC winning the by-election may represent Chinese communities’ growing dissatisfaction with Liberals’ position on bottom line issues. As the editor of this paper, I express the community’s dissatisfaction over Liberia’s political agenda in an interview with CBC. “The winning represents the community’s discontent with many issues, particularly the Liberals’ ‘mismanagement of taxpayers’ money and overspending’”, I was quoted as saying. 

本月初,著名企业家Kevin O’Leary在致韦恩省长的一封公开信中利用具体事实揭示了省府是如何大肆挥霍纳税人的金钱,其中包括安省流失大量工作岗位,以及省府花费$800万元推广根本就不存在的安省退休金计划(ORPP)等。在本报将这封公开信翻成中文后,引起华裔社区读者的强烈反响。

Earlier this month, Kevin O’Leary, a prominent entrepreneur wrote an open letter to Kathleen Wynne, using hard data to reveal the government overspends taxpayers’ money – including the significant job loss in Ontario and the government’s spending of $8 million on marketing the Ontario Retirement Pension Plan (ORPP) -- even though it has never existed.  The translated version of the letter by this paper has sparked strong reactions from the Chinese community readers.

Rollia.Net上的一则留言问道:“自由党的支持率持续下降,尤其是在西安大略地区……我想不通为什么从天然气发电厂到eHealth等诸多丑闻从未影响自由党获选,为何他们总能从丑闻中逃脱?”

“The Liberals’ approve rating continues to drop, especially in Western Ontario… I wonder why these scandals – from gas plant and eHealth never cost the Liberals in the election and why they could always get away with the scandals?” one post on Rollia.Net asked.

另一则留言答复称:“安省省民认为只有自由党才能更好地掌管经济,看来这完全是一种误解。”

“Ontarians believe that only the Liberals can better manage the economy, which seems to be a misconception,” another one answered. 
 
补选结果和低落的民调数字已经给韦恩政府敲响警钟,安省政府也因此急于寻求解决方案以平息选民不满和提振不断下落的民调数字。随着韦恩省长从长计议,已开始为20个月后的连任竞选做准备。她日前宣布将从明年1月17日开始取消家庭和小企业用户电费账单中8%的HST省税部分。

The by-election results and the flagging poll numbers have sounded alarm bell for Wynne’s government, which scrambles for solutions to cool voter anger and to reverse their flagging poll numbers. Premier Kathleen Wynne announced that it will take the 8-per-cent provincial portion of the HST off electricity bills for homes and small businesses starting Jan. 17, as she begins planning a long arc toward her re-election campaign in 20 month’s time. 

但是,如果电力系统不进行结构性改革,这种权宜之计根本不可能阻止电费上涨。而对于一心想要赢回失去民心的自由党来说,该举措缺乏力度,且为时过晚。

But without structural change in the electricity system, this Band-Aid solution is unlikely to stop the rate from climbing. The hydro tax break may come in just too little too late to win back voters that the Liberals have lost touch with for years. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

我们鼓励所有读者在我们的文章和博客上分享意见。We are committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion, so we ask you to avoid personal attacks, and please keep your comments relevant and respectful. Visit the FAQ page for more information.