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Hydro rates affect museum

Kathleen Wynne, Tim Hudak and Andrea Horwath are set to duke it out during Tuesday evening's televised leaders' debate.

One hot issue has been Ontario's rising hydro rates, but rural residents and farmers aren't the only ones to feel the pinch.

The Canada Museum of Agriculture and Food has been dealing with higher hydro rates.

"The hydro rates have gone up and we are trying to make every effort to reduce our operating costs in regards to the hydro," said Simon Aubin, the chief of facilities for the museum.

The museum heats the buildings for visitors on top of running farming operations, and Aubin said they've had to take mitigating action.

"We've actually reduced the heat in the barn that we put out for the visitors, so the visitors do have to wear their coats during the winter months," said Aubin, pointing out the animals generate their own heat and do not need the barns to be as warm.

"The other measure that we're looking into right now is the technology for the ventilation in the barns is dated from the '70s and we're having a look at upgrading that to reduce the amount of air exchange in the barns themselves," he added.

The long, cold winter also played a factor in the higher bills. Aubin said he would have a better picture of just how much higher the bills are be when they begin to regulate in the summer months.

The leaders debate begins at 6:30 p.m. on CFRA and CTV Ottawa.

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