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Posted in: Ontario | Consumer Protection

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Input Sought on Updated Regulations to Implement Ontario’s Door-to-Door Sales Ban and Other Changes to Consumer Loan and Lease Rules By David Stevens Jul 18, 2017 Ontario’s Ministry of Consumer Services recently released two Consultation Papers related to changes to the Consumer Protection Act (CPA) that had been enacted through Bill 59, which is titled Putting Consumers First Act (Consumer Protection Statute Law Amendment), 2017. The aim of the Cons...
Ontario’s New Long-Term Energy Plan to Be Released Around Late Summer of 2017 By David Stevens Jul 11, 2017 On July 7, 2017, the Ontario Ministry of Energy released a proposal for a new Regulation under the Electricity Act, 1998 that will specify the timing for Ontario’s Long-Term Energy Plan (LTEP). If the Regulation is issued, then the new LTEP will be released within three months of the Regula...

Posted in: Consumer Protection | Ontario | Ratemaking | Energy Policy

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OEB Announces New Electricity Prices to Reflect the Fair Hydro Plan By David Stevens Jun 23, 2017 On June 22, 2017, the Ontario Energy Board announced new electricity prices that are intended to implement the promised 25% bill reduction from the Ontario Government’s Fair Hydro Plan.1 For most consumers, the impact will be seen in the form of reduced Regulated Price Plan (RPP) electricit...

Posted in: Ontario | Ratemaking | Consumer Protection | Energy Policy

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Regulations Published to Implement Ontario's Fair Hydro Plan By David Stevens Jun 22, 2017 On May 31, 2017, the Ontario Government passed Bill 132, which is intended to implement the Government’s promised Fair Hydro Plan (discussed in earlier posts, here, here and here). The main part of Bill 132 is the Ontario Fair Hydro Plan Act, 2017, which is included as Schedule I and is ref...

Posted in: Ontario | Energy Policy | Consumer Protection

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OEB Provides First Look at Proposed New Cyber Security Framework By Gaurav Gopinath and David Stevens Jun 16, 2017 In December 2015, the lights blinked out across multiple provinces in the Ivano-Frankivsk region of Ukraine. Nearly a quarter of a million people lost power. Shortly after power was restored, Ukraine’s Computer Emergency Response Team announced they had identified the root cause: a cyberatt...

Posted in: Consumer Protection | Ratemaking | Ontario

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OEB Expands Rate Review to Include Energy Retailer Service Charges By Stephanie D’Amico and David Stevens Jun 12, 2017 On May 31, 2017, the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) released a letter stating its intention to review and update Energy Retailer Service Charges for both electricity and natural gas distributors. The review is the second phase of a larger initiative undertaken by the OEB to reevaluate misce...

Posted in: Energy Policy | Ontario | Ratemaking | Consumer Protection

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Ontario’s Financial Accountability Office Finds That “Fair Hydro Plan” Has a Net Cost of $21 Billion By David Stevens May 25, 2017 On May 24, 2017, Ontario’s Financial Accountability Office (FAO) published its Assessment of the Fiscal Impact of the Province’s Fair Hydro Plan. This Assessment reviews how Ontario’s Fair Hydro Plan (FHP) will impact electricity ratepayers and provincial finances. As set out in...

Posted in: Practice & Procedure | Ontario | Consumer Protection

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OEB Issues “Consumer Charter” and Announces Details of Review of Utilities’ Current Customer Service Rules By David Stevens May 24, 2017 On May 16, 2017, the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) published its “Consumer Charter.” As explained by the OEB, the Consumer Charter sets out the key rights held by Ontario energy consumers in an “easily understood format.” The consumer rights addressed in the Consumer Charter ...

Posted in: Consumer Protection | Energy Policy | Ontario | Ratemaking

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Recently-Posted OEB Report Supports Elimination of Distribution Charges for On-Reserve First Nations Customers By David Stevens Apr 27, 2017 As we discussed in an earlier post, one element of the Ontario Government’s Fair Hydro Plan proposes the creation of a First Nations On-Reserve Delivery Credit, which will eliminate the delivery charge for all on-reserve First Nations households. An Ontario Energy Board (OEB) Report to the ...

Posted in: Energy Policy | Ontario | Ratemaking | Consumer Protection

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Ontario's Electricity Rates to Go Down in Advance of Implementing the "Fair Hydro Plan" By David Stevens Apr 21, 2017 On April 20, 2017, the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) announced that the electricity supply cost (Regulated Price Plan or RPP) for residential and small business customers will be reduced starting on May 1. As explained in the OEB's Regulated Price Plan Price Report, the reduction in RPP results from...

Posted in: Ontario | Practice & Procedure | Facilities | Consumer Protection

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OEB Requires Electricity Distributor to Take Over Embedded Distributor's Operations By David Stevens Apr 13, 2017 On April 4, 2017, the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) issued an Order requiring Algoma Power Inc. (Algoma Power) to operate the electricity distribution system owned by Dubreuil Lumber Inc. (DLI) in the Township of Dubreuil (which is north of Wawa, Ontario). The OEB's Order follows notification from D...

Posted in: Ontario | Consumer Protection

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Ontario Passes Legislation That May Ban Door-to-Door HVAC Transactions By David Stevens Apr 12, 2017 On April 10, 2017, the Ontario government passed Bill 59, titled Putting Consumers First Act (Consumer Protection Statute Law Amendment), 2017. The version of the legislation that was passed is substantially similar to the initial version, which we wrote about in an earlier post, and in a related...

Posted in: Energy Policy | Ontario | Ratemaking | Consumer Protection

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Regulatory Changes to Support Ontario's Fair Hydro Plan Posted for Comment By David Stevens Mar 30, 2017 Earlier this month, the Ontario Ministry of Energy posted two notices about regulatory amendments being proposed to implement the Fair Hydro Plan announced by Premier Wynne. As we discussed earlier, the Fair Hydro Plan aims to reduce Ontario electricity bills by 25% through a series of measures, ...

Posted in: Canada (Federal) | Consumer Protection | Climate Change / Renewables

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NRCan Developing Stringent Energy Efficiency Standards For Appliances and Equipment By David Stevens Mar 08, 2017 On March 4, 2017, Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) issued a Notice to initiate the development of new or more stringent energy efficiency standards for 17 product categories of appliances and equipment. This is the first step in a consultation process that will result in updates to the Energy Eff...

Posted in: Energy Policy | Ontario | Consumer Protection

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OEB Bans Residential Electricity Customer Disconnections For the 2017 Winter By David Stevens Feb 24, 2017 As expected, the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) has moved quickly to ban local electricity distribution companies (LDCs) from disconnecting residential consumers during the current winter season. In a Decision and Order issued on February 23, 2017, the OEB amended the licences of each LDC to include ...

Posted in: Energy Policy | Ontario | Consumer Protection

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Ontario Passes Legislation to Support Banning Winter Disconnections By David Stevens Feb 23, 2017 On February 22, 2017, the Ontario government introduced and passed the Protecting Vulnerable Energy Consumers Act, 2017 (Bill 95). The new legislation was introduced and passed all in one sitting because it had the unanimous support of all parties in the Legislature. This legislation follows the ...

Posted in: Ontario | Practice & Procedure | Ratemaking | Consumer Protection

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Ontario's Minister of Energy Asks LDCs to Stop Winter Disconnections By David Stevens Feb 17, 2017 On February 16, 2017, Glenn Thibeault (Ontario's Minister of Energy) sent a letter to Ontario's local electricity distribution companies (LDCs) requesting that they voluntarily stop disconnecting customers during the winter season. According to news reports (see here, for example), the Minister h...

Posted in: Practice & Procedure | Consumer Protection | Amy Marcen-Gaudaur

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What the Newly-Empowered Electricity Consumer Expects from Their LDC Feb 15, 2017 Aird & Berlis LLP recently hosted a complimentary webinar, examining the ways by which new technologies and customer engagement strategies will shape the electricity industry in the future. The webinar was moderated by Ron Clark, partner and member of the Energy Group at Aird & Berlis LLP...

Posted in: Energy Policy | Ontario | Ratemaking | Consumer Protection

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Implementation Details for Ontario's 8% Electricity Rebate Announced By David Stevens Feb 13, 2017 On February 9, 2017, the Ontario Energy Board issued a letter titled Implementation of the Ontario Rebate for Electricity Consumers. As we described in an earlier post, starting on January 1, 2017, the Ontario Rebate for Electricity Consumers (OREC) provides an 8% rebate (equal to the provincial ...

Posted in: Ontario | Consumer Protection

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OEB Introduces Process For Online Verification of Retail Contracts By David Stevens Feb 01, 2017 On January 31, 2017, the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) issued a Notice of Proposal setting out changes to the Codes of Conduct for Electricity Retailers and Gas Marketers that would allow verification of energy retail contracts to be done online. The proposed rules require the energy marketer's thir...
BCUC Determines That it Has No Jurisdiction to Approve Low-Income Rates By David Stevens Jan 24, 2017 On January 20, 2017, the British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) released its decision in a BC Hydro Rate Design Application (the Decision). The Decision addresses a number of issues related to how BC Hydro sets its rates, and will be applicable to the updated BC Hydro revenue requirement be...

Posted in: Ontario | Consumer Protection | Climate Change / Renewables

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New Website Shows Cap and Trade Costs For Ontario Consumers By David Stevens Jan 11, 2017 Ontario's Cap and Trade program commenced on January 1, 2017. As we have discussed in earlier posts (here and here), the Ontario Energy Board previously determined that Cap and Trade costs will not be presented as a separate line item on natural gas bills. Instead, the Cap and Trade costs will be...
Ontario's Energy Minister Directs IESO to Fund New Programs and Amend FIT Procurements By David Stevens Dec 21, 2016 On December 16, 2016, Ontario's Minster of Energy issued a Directive to the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) to amend or revoke previous directions. The Directive addresses a number of topics, including amending targets for the Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) program, enabling funding for cert...

Posted in: Ontario | Consumer Protection

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OEB Mandates New Standard Contract Terms and Verification Calls For Electricity and Gas Retailers By David Stevens Dec 13, 2016 In early December 2016, the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) issued two Notices (here and here) confirming new rules and requirements that will apply to electricity retailers and gas marketers in Ontario. As per our earlier post discussing the OEB's draft versions of these documents, the new rules are ...
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