Feb 28, 2017

By Jane Brown

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Ontario’s NDP leader says she can cut hydro bills by up to 30 percent, on top of the governing Liberals’ 8 percent rebate on the Ontario portion of the HST on electricity.

Andrea Horvath’s plan would allow consumers to opt out of time of use pricing, cap profits for private power producers supplying the grid, and return Hydro One to full public ownership by buying back shares. Horwath will have more to say about her proposal today on Zoomer Radio’s Fight Back with Libby Znaimer after the noon news.

The Zoomers’ Group CARP – A New vision of Aging – is advocating for a break in skyrocketing hydro rates with the new Heat or Eat campaign.

CARP’s VP of Advocacy Wanda Morris met with Energy Minister Glenn Thibeault last week and told Zoomer Radio’s Fight Back with Libby Znaimer he promised financial relief by the spring budget as well as reform to the way the rates are structured.

“The current structure of peak and non-peak rates is really unfair to seniors, many of whom are home during the day and particularly unfair to seniors in rural areas where they can’t go out to a shopping mall or somewhere else that is already heated, so we’ve been pushing for reform there and the energy minister said that while he couldn’t comment exactly what would happen, there were a number of ideas on the table,” Morris explained.

Morris says Thibeault mentioned the possibility of allowing hydro customers to pay a flat rate which would be slightly higher than the current low peak rate, not unlike what the NDP leader is suggesting in her proposal.

CARP’s Heat or Eat campaign says the reality for some Ontarians is choosing between using hydro or buying groceries.

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