Ontario Farmers to See Pandemic Hydro Relief

Ontario farmers are expected to see substantial hydro savings after the government on Tuesday announced immediate electricity rate relief in response to the covid-19 pandemic.

For a 45-day period, Queen’s Park said it is working to suspend time-of-use electricity rates, holding electricity prices to the off-peak rate of 10.1 cents-per-kilowatt-hour. This reduced price will be available 24 hours per day, seven days a week to all time-of-use customers, who make up the majority of electricity consumers in the province.

By switching to a fixed off-peak rate, time-of-use customers are expected to see rate reductions of over 50% compared to on-peak rates. For Ontario farms, that could translate into a monthly savings of more $300. (Small businesses are forecast to save up to $150 per month and the average family more than $20.

To deliver savings as quickly and conveniently as possible, this discount will be applied automatically to electricity bills without the need for customers to fill out an application form.

"During this unprecedented time, we are providing much-needed relief to Ontarians, specifically helping those who are doing the right thing by staying home and small businesses that have closed or are seeing fewer customers," said Premier Doug Ford. "By adopting a fixed, 24/7 off-peak rate, we are making things a little easier during these difficult times and putting more money in people's pockets for other important priorities and necessities."

Depending on billing cycles, some customers will see these changes on their next electricity bill. Time-of-use customers whose billing cycle ended before their local distribution company implemented this change will receive the reduced rate as a credit on a future bill.

Source: DePutter Publishing Ltd.

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