The Atlantic Institute for Market Studies today released a letter sent to New Brunswick Power President James Hankinson.  The letter is intended to clarify certain parts of a paper published on February 4, 1997 by AIMS entitled Energizing New Brunswick Power: A Brighter Future for Consumers and Taxpayers written by Thomas Adams. 

“New Brunswick Power expressed to us concerns that certain statements in the AIMS report might be interpreted as calling into question the personal integrity or veracity of Mr Hankinson or suggesting a lack of concern for safety issues at Point Lepreau,” said AIMS President Brian Lee Crowley.  “It was never our intention to cast the debate about NB Power in personal terms, and so to the extent that the report could be interpreted in this way, we have wanted to make it clear from the beginning that we were sorry and apologized.” 

At the same time, Crowley made clear that AIMS’ action in writing the letter was intended to focus debate where it belongs: on the substantive content of the Adams report.  “We want to be clear that we believe that  the analysis of NB Power’s operations that was made in the February 4 report is well supported and documented and deserves full consideration by policy makers, analysts and the public,” said Crowley.  “AIMS is a public policy think tank whose purpose is to foster discussion on public policy issues, such as the performance and future of New Brunswick Power, a Crown corporation.  The appropriate place to debate the substantive issues raised by the AIMS report is in the public forum where these matters should be considered on their merits. Our letter is designed to get the debate back into that context.” 

It is AIMS’ understanding that NB Power has accepted the apology, and that any threat of legal action by the Crown corporation against the Institute and its directors has been withdrawn. 

The text of the letter, signed by AIMS Chairman, Purdy Crawford, and dated May 7, 1997, follows: 

AIMS published a report by Thomas Adams dated February 4, 1997, entitled Energizing New Brunswick Power: A Brighter Future for Consumers and Taxpayers.

To the extent that remarks made in the report suggested that Mr Hankinson misled the Legislative Committee, questioned his integrity or veracity, or cast doubts on his and NB Power’s concern for safety issues at Point Lepreau, AIMS is sorry and apologizes for having published such remarks.

We at AIMS have the greatest respect for the integrity of the management of NB Power, including specifically Mr Hankinson and the Board of NB Power.