Instead of completely scrapping the law concerning privatization of Crown corporations, the Wall government has introduced legislation to amend Bill 40.
Last month, after listening to the people of Saskatchewan, the premier said they would repeal Bill 40.
It was just passed in the spring session, and it would have allowed up to 49 per cent of a Crown corporation to be sold off to a private company. That part of the bill is on its way to being repealed.
However, Deputy Premier and Justice Minister Don Morgan said the law will still allow the winding-up or dissolution of a Crown corporation, similar to what happened with the Saskatchewan Transportation Company (STC).
“A winding up is different than a sale. There may be some reason why something has become unnecessary or redundant, then we don’t have to come back and look to another piece of legislation,” Morgan reasoned.
However, Opposition NDP interim leader Nicole Sarauer indicated the province did not do what it said it was going to do in fully scrapping Bill 40.
“They’ve backtracked on that somewhat. They’ve repealed only part of Bill 40 and kept wind down for them to use at any point. They can scrap any one of our crowns now without having to go through the legislation, the Crown Corporation Protection Act,” Sarauer said.
She further explained it all depends on how you look at the word privatize.
“One could argue that STC being wound down and that its pieces sold to private companies is a form of privatization and that’s our concern.”
Morgan said a sale and winding-up or dissolution are fundamentally different situations, again citing STC with its consistent route closures in the years before its demise, as a good example of why they plan on leaving the wording in the bill that will allow a winding-up.