TORONTO, Ont. – Ontario’s opposition leaders decried the timing of Dalton McGuinty’s exit and move to prorogue the legislature on Tuesday at a time of economic uncertainty in the province.

McGuinty shocked Queen’s Park on Monday night by announcing his resignation and proroguing the legislature during fallout from two cancelled power plants and problems at the Ornge air ambulance service.

Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak said while he stands by McGuinty’s decision to resign, he does not agree with his decision to prorogue the legislature.

“Sadly, Dalton McGuinty is putting his own Liberal party ahead of taxpayers and the province of Ontario – it’s the wrong decision,” Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak said.

“There is no reason why the MPPs can’t be at work today focusing on jobs, and balancing the books.”

In a letter, Hudak urged McGuinty to recall the legislature.

“Premier, I respect your decision to resign. However, we do not need to bring the daily workings of the legislature to a halt in order to accommodate a Liberal leadership race,” he wrote.

NDP Leader Andrea Horwath slammed the legislative break as a tactic to divert attention from the ongoing controversy over the cancellation of two power plants.

“It’s a shameful thing when once again the Liberal self-interest is overshadowing the needs of the people of this province,” she said.

Dubbing it a “forced vacation,” Horwath said the Liberals “didn’t want to stay here and deal with the unfolding scandal that was happening with the gas plants.”

McGuinty said Monday he will stay on until the Liberals elect a new leader, adding the timing of the recall of the legislature would have to occur then at the discretion of his successor.

Deputy Premier and Finance Minister Dwight Duncan said work can continue despite McGuinty’s move to prorogue the legislature.

Duncan is considering running for leader of the Ontario Liberal Party.