Thursday, February 27, 2014

Ontario Hydro's Debt Retirement Charge. When Is It Over?

Yesterday on the Ontario subreddit, there was some comments about the debt retirement charge for Ontario electricity consumers. Curious, using only the least amount of google fu effort, I found this Toronto Sun article. Interestingly, the Ontario government is tying together or at least trying to the end of the debt retirement charge with the ending of the 10% Clean Energy Benefit subsidy:

The provincial government is trying to rejig hydro bills to ensure that customers aren’t hit with a sharp increase when the Ontario Clean Energy Benefit is phased out, Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli says.

The government is scheduled to end the benefit, a 10% break on hydro bills, at the end of 2015.
The plan was to also eliminate the debt retirement charge on hydro bills at the same time, he said Wednesday.

“It was scheduled to come off at the time the Clean Energy Benefit was coming off, and they would balance each other out more or less,” he said.

When the old Ontario Hydro was broken up into Hydro One and Ontario Power Generation in 1999, its $20.9-billion stranded debt was handed over to the Ontario Electricity Financial Corp.

Looks like that may not happen though:

Chiarelli said retiring that debt is taking a little longer than originally anticipated.
“The financial projections turned out not to be as precise as they were anticipated,” he said.

I would be curious to know the total amount that has been paid over the years for the debt retirement charge. No doubt it is quite high. 

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