United Way on December 16, 2020, posted an article about energy poverty and what causes it. The article stated: “Canada’s most populace province, Ontario, has the highest numbers of households struggling with energy poverty (1.1 M households).”
To put some context on the foregoing; those 1.1 million households would represent 22.9% of all residential electricity customers and 29.4% of all natural gas residential customers according to the OEB’s (Ontario Energy Board) 2020 yearbook of each customer group.
For some unknown reason the OCAA (Ontario Clean Air Alliance) who have three (3) employees, and five (5) directors one of whom is Jack Gibbons in each category, have been making presentations to numerous and gullible municipal politicians across the province. Those presentations were meant to convince the municipalities they should push the Provincial Government to close all of Ontario’s gas plants. At last count 32 municipalities have bought into the OCAA’s diatribe. The IESO reported closing those gas plants would drive up average residential electricity bills by $1,200 per annum and also cause blackouts.
It is interesting to note; Gibbons, back in May 2006, was a big fan of gas plants speaking out in support of the Portlands Energy Centre (PEC) a proposed 550 MW gas plant and was quoted as follows: “Some people are opposed to a power plant (of any kind) in Toronto — period,” said Jack Gibbons, chair of the Ontario Clean Air Alliance. However, “some people are not fully aware how clean the Portlands Energy Centre will be.”
Should one go seeking for Gibbons biography you find little about him but what yours truly found was a list of speaker biographies in a website called “cleanairhamilton.ca” and what it stated was: “The Ontario Clean Air Alliance is a coalition of 80 organizations including the City of Hamilton, the Regions of Peel and Waterloo and the City of Toronto. Our member organizations represent over 6 million Ontarians.” These days the OCAA don’t make the foregoing claim but that doesn’t seem to have diminished Gibbon’s ability to dazzle the elected politicians in those municipalities.
The OCAA and the registered charity OCAA Research Institute (OCAARI) report they generated gross revenue (combined) of only $92,133.89 for the year ended September 30, 2020. The OCAARI filing with the CRA indicates, for 2020, their gross revenue was $92,136.00. Not sure where the difference of $2.11 went but perhaps Gibbons purchased a coffee! Curiosity piqued, a look back at the oldest (posted) CRA results for the year ended September 30, 2016 indicates total revenue of $63,042.00. That year the OCAARI reported charitable expenditures of $107,245 whereas in the 2020 report to the CRA those charitable expenditures were shown as $79,690.
Recognizing the limited revenue being generated by this seemingly powerful organization, I reached out to Gibbons with the following question related to their 2020 CRA filing which indicated $6,645 as the amount spent on “management and administration”:
“I was looking at the OCAA’s September 30, 2020 filing with the CRA and found the following info kind of shocking so was wondering how you and Angela manage to survive on so little compensation?
Can you explain please as you can’t possibly survive on so little, particularly all three of you listed on your website? Curious if you are being paid by others like Hydro Quebec or TAF or perhaps the IVEY Foundation? Wondering and would sure appreciate an explanation.”
What I got back in response was:
“Hi Parker, We have two organizations: a) Ontario Clean Air Alliance Research Inc (OCAARI) which is a registered charity; and b) Ontario Clean Air Alliance (OCAA) which is a non-profit.
As of September 30, 2021, OCAARI has never had any employees. But on October 1, 2021 Angela became an employee of OCAARI.
OCAA has had employees in the past. I have been a volunteer for many years. We have not received funding from TAF or Ivey for many years. We have never received funding from Hydro Quebec.
As noted above the posting on their website indicates “combined revenue” for both organizations for their 2020 yearend, was $92,133.89 and charitable donations were $79,690 which doesn’t leave much available to pay his two staff members particularly if they continue to spend money on “political activities”.
For the 2020 year they reported expenses of $43,698 on political activities meaning they blew past their gross revenues for the year.
From all appearances the CRA with in excess of 45,000 employees as of March 30, 2020 has no problems with the OCAARI operating as a charity and can presumably find nothing wrong with their activities or filings with them.
The above demonstrates a sad state of affairs for those of us who pay taxes to supplement the activities of this particular organization (and presumably many others) whose aim under their CEO and Chair, Jack Gibbons, seems dedicated to driving more households in Ontario into energy poverty.
We need the bureaucrats to do their job!