NDP SLAMS FUEL PUMP PROPOSAL AS “YEARS LATE & MILLIONS SHORT”: Government allowed gas stations to rip-off consumers for millions

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
APRIL 15, 2010

NDP SLAMS FUEL PUMP PROPOSAL AS “YEARS LATE & MILLIONS SHORT”: Government allowed gas stations to rip-off consumers for millions

OTTAWA – The Government’s proposed “Fairness at the Pump Act” is too little, too late, says NDP Industry, Automotive, and Border Critic Brian Masse (Windsor-West).

“Gas-pump problems were exposed more than two years ago by a media investigation and the government waited far too long to respond. And now the government is allowing thieves to keep what they stole over the past few years,” said Masse.

An investigation by the Ottawa Citizen revealed that between 1999 and 2007, government inspections of over 200,000 fuel pumps found that about 5 per cent of pumps delivered less fuel than reported on the pump display. The government inspection data showed that about one third of Canada's gas stations - about 14,000 - had at least one faulty pump.

A motorist who fills up at various stations and pumps is likely being short-changed about twice a year. In some communities such as Windsor, almost 25 percent of fuel pumps inspected were discovered to be faulty.

“The NDP called for all the regulations and inspections contained in this bill years ago. The government delayed for no reason. In the meantime, millions of dollars have been stolen from Canadians under the Harper Conservatives’ watch.”

“What is outrageous is that the government potentially collected taxes from consumers who were paying for phantom gasoline. Talk about hot air! The question that must be asked is whether the government earned tax revenues from this short-changing of Canadian motorists and, if so, how much? Will this “law and order” government charge the criminals who stole Canadians’ money?”

To make matters worse, the “Fairness at the Pumps Act” will further remove the federal government from the inspection process and will essentially allow the oil industry to police itself.

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For more information please contact:
Carole Saab, Press Secretary, 613-222-5997 or saabc@parl.gc.ca