FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 24, 2014
SIMCOE – May Day will be more of a distress call than a celebration this year as Ontario residents already struggling with skyrocketing electricity prices will start paying even more.
Effective May 1, electricity rates in Ontario will be going up by 0.6 cents per kilowatt-hour during peak hours to 13.5 cents.
“People are already struggling with their electricity bills, they don’t need to pay more,” said Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Toby Barrett. “Although the increase is less than a cent per kilowatt-hour, HST on the bill pushes it higher. Delivery, regulatory charges and the debt retirement charge make the bill even higher.”
Barrett blames the Green Energy Act – a $20-billion expenditure to produce just 1.1 per cent of Ontario’s energy. In addition, he fingers the $1.1 billion cost of the gas plant scandal.
“The government might say it will only cost a cup of coffee more a day,” Barrett said. “But ratepayers have been hit by cup after cup pushing the average energy bill to the highest in North America.”
He pointed out seniors and those on a limited income are particularly hard hit by the price increases.
Barrett was also critical that the debt retirement charge is expected to remain on bills until 2016. He advocates the debt retirement charge should be removed from hydro bills, and an accounting of the cost of the gas plants cancellation be added in the interests of transparency.
“If the government had properly managed the electricity system and directed money collected through the debt retirement charge towards its intended purpose, it should have been paid off by now, and the charge should have come off Ontario electricity bills,” said Ontario PC Energy Critic Lisa MacLeod.
For more information contact MPP Toby Barrett at 519-428-0446