Largest Cut to Electricity Rates in the History of Ontario

Electricity Rates Will Come Down and Stay Down

Monday, March 6, 2017

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Ontario Liberals are tripling the size of the cut we're making to people's hydro bills from 8 per cent to 25 per cent. Electricity rates in Ontario will come down significantly. They're going to stay down and everyone will benefit.

“I have heard from people around the province who are worried about the price they are asked to pay for electricity and the impact it has on their household budget. Electricity is a necessity. By fixing problems in the system, we will be able to provide every residential customer in Ontario with an average 25 per cent off their bills now and make rates fairer in the future.” Kathleen Wynne said yesterday as she introduced the Fair Hydro Plan.

The Premier explained "We had to play catch up and we asked today's ratepayers to cover nearly the whole tab. Think of it in terms of a mortgage. We needed to rebuild the system and so we went to the bank for that money. But the terms that were set weren't fair, particularly the amortization. Instead of paying off the mortgage in 30 years we agreed to a term of 20. That means that we pay things down faster, but the monthly mortgage payments, or in this case your hydro bills, are higher. And it doesn't really make sense since that house, or in this case the electricity system, is an asset that will continue to benefit people for long past that contract term. In effect, this generation has been subsidizing not just those who came before, but those who will come next. And that's not right. And it has been notably unfair on today's hydro users. So we're fixing that. We're refinancing the mortgage and we're setting a new term that stretches over a longer period. Over time, it will cost a bit more; that's true. And it will take longer to pay off; that's also true. But it is fairer because it doesn't ask this generation of hydro customers alone to pay the freight for everyone who came before and everyone who is going to come after. The burden will now be shared more evenly and more appropriately. So that's the first and the most important fix we're putting in place."

In the past few years, Ontario Liberals have invested more than $50 billion in electricity infrastructure: new dams in the south, new towers in the north, $13 billion to refurbish nuclear power plants alone, and billions more to ensure new transmission and distribution lines everywhere. These are enormously important assets that meet the need for cleaner and reliable power everywhere in the province. These are assets that belong to all of the people of Ontario and they'll serve us for many decades to come.