Liberal MHA Eddie Joyce seems to know about something going on with the Abitibi mill in Grand Falls-Windsor, but he could not get a clear answer in the House of Assembly.
With $11 million spent on an idle pellet plant (in Roddickton) and no due diligence by the premier or the company, I have one simple question for the premier,” Joyce said Wednesday. “Can you confirm if this same company is now on the short list for the Abitibi site and resources in Central Newfoundland?”
Natural Resources Minister Derrick Dalley said he couldn’t say.
“That is still confidential information, Mr. Speaker,” Dalley said.
At issue was whether the same company that got millions from the government to produce wood pellets in Roddickton is now getting involved in central.
“It is bad enough that the premier handed over $10 million in taxpayers’ money to the Roddickton pellet plant without due diligence, but she also gave the owner an additional $1 million in tax rebates,” Joyce said.
“I ask the premier: how can you justify more tax rebates for a company that already took $10 million of taxpayers’ money and never produced one commercial pellet?”
Dalley acknowledged that the government put $10 million into the pellet plant, but the “the economics changed” which is why it’s not commercially viable. But he said the government definitely didn’t give an extra million dollars in tax rebates.