Ontario’s Hydro One’s Plan To Have Customers Pre-Pay For Electricity Will Hurt Families

 “The privatized Hydro One is seeking a 20 per cent increase (in hydro rates).” – Ontario NDP Energy Critic Peter Tabuns

A News Release from Ontario’s New Democratic Party

Posted November 22nd, 2017 on Niagara At Large

Queen’s Park, Toronto —In question period this November 21st,, Ontario NDP Energy critic Peter Tabuns called on the Wynne Liberals to stand up for Ontario families and direct the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) to stop the privatized Hydro One’s plan to require pre-payment for power.

Hidden in Hydro One’s distribution rate application for 2018-2022 are plans to replace recently installed smart meters with pre-payment meters, requiring customers to pay for electricity before they use it and creating a loophole to new rules banning winter disconnections. 

“Instead of reducing its rates, as the government promised would happen, the privatized Hydro One is seeking a 20 per cent increase,” said Tabuns. “But there’s more. On page 2,038 of the application, we learn that Hydro One wants to install pre-payment meters, which require the customer to pay first before they get any electricity.

“Everywhere pre-payment meters have been used, they have hurt struggling families.”

Recently, the OEB issued a directive banning licensed electricity distributors from disconnecting homes for non-payment during winter months, but pre-payment meters would allow Hydro One to bypass this rule. Tabuns said the Liberal government is allowing the privatized Hydro One to use harmful Thatcher-era tactics to bypass the OEB directive and stop providing power to families that are unable to pay.

“After Margaret Thatcher privatized the UK’s water system, utilities began installing these pre-payment meters,” said Tabuns. “They hurt struggling families and created a public health crisis. The premier  has hurt families in Ontario by privatizing Hydro One. Hydro One is installing pre-payment hydro meters so it can bypass Ontario’s rules for disconnections. Hydro One won’t have to disconnect anyone. The power will get cut off automatically if the customer doesn’t feed the meter.”

“Will the government direct the Ontario Energy Board to prohibit Hydro One’s use of pre-payment meters?” asked Tabuns.

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“A politician thinks of the next election. A leader thinks of the next generation.” – Bernie Sanders


9 responses to “Ontario’s Hydro One’s Plan To Have Customers Pre-Pay For Electricity Will Hurt Families

  1. When the City of Welland appointed then councilor Frank Campion to sell off Welland Hydro in the 1990s It was the actions of the late Yvette Ward who shot the plan down along with the Councilor. At that time proponents of City owned Electricity from Buffalo loudly supported the ideal of Taxpayer owner services and lent their support to the taxpayers of Welland. The OPPOSED sell off of Hydro one by this Corporate owned and CONTROLLED Liberal Government of Ontario to the Private sector heralds the end to the term “A DEMOCRACY” for the will of the people was lost to the “PRIVATIZING AGENDA” of another CORPORATE owned Government the LIBERALS of ONTARIO.
    In My honest opinion I truly believe that the terms as now implemented indicates a total sell out of the taxpayers by people “ELECTED” by the people to protect the people’s interests..INSTEAD
    GOVERNMENT of the CORPORATIONS………. BY the CORPORATIONS ……and for the CORPORATIONS………. brings truth to the REALITY of Ontario corrupt politics NOW ….

    But there will be those who prosper from this sell out and they will be at the polls Voting for their favourite Party on Election day.


  2. What would happen if the people (all of us!!) collectively decided to not pay our hydro bills for an agreed upon window of time that lasted several months. Would not the energy providers have to take us seriously? The dog has to start wagging the tail again!!! We have to organize and we need to speak with our wallets. Similarly, we get annoyed at the gas pumps when prices skyrocket for no justifiable reason. A possible solution would be an immediate boycott of one specific fuel provider, again, for an agreed upon period of time and by every consumer. There are many service providers that not only take us for granted but do great harm. An example, big banks. Solution, withdraw every cent out of every bank and dump it into a local Credit Union either for good or until we have successfully affected change. It would not take long before those who are bent on extorting from us our hard earned money would be forced to listen to us. We outnumber our dictators and monopolies by a huge margin yet we fail time and again to take any meaningful action, instead waiting for elections that are bought and rigged by big money ensuring that we never get off of the Mobius strip.


  3. Dan Andrews wildniagara

    When it becomes unbearable, renewable energy companies will flourish in the retail sector and the giants will fall.


    • Dan, are those the Renewable Energy Companies that are getting paid 0.80 cents per Kw only 1,500 % more than our Base Rate pre $ mart meters when Base Rate was 0.051 cents per Kw. Or the Wynnd Farms that are paid 700 % more @ 0.40 cents per Kw. I guess they could afford to pay Pole Rental like Bell Canada and Hydro bill each other when it is more cost effective.
      Peak Rate at 0.18 cents per Kw it is 353 % more than Base Rate of 5.1 cents Pre $mart meters.


      • When I say renewable companies in the retail sector I mean those that sell us the equipment to produce energy right here at home. Some solar on the roof a turbine on the shed etc


      • Dan if you have a FIT Contract you cannot use the electricity produced on your property. You have to Feed it into the System and Buy it Back at TOU Pricing.


  4. This is SHOCKING NEWS
    And I don’t just mean the electricity…

    Question: If HYDRO ONE is now a privatized company, will we be forced to use them as our power supplier,
    or can we construct our own wind and or solar sources detached from the grid?
    Being force to use HYDRO ONE (as a private company) would be like being forced to buy only a certain brand of automobile designated by the government for us to drive, or only allowed to shop in specified stores for food and clothing.



  5. Great idea Carla! They can’t take us all to court. Start a petition or get together with others and buy full page ads. There must be some public advocate groups or ombudsmen that could initiate it.

    What happens, at my age, if I prepay and then I croak? Will they buy me a bigger hole in the ground?

    Everyone from retailers to service providers care only about ripping people off, not about providing quality services or making a decent profit as opposed to a gluttonous, exorbitant one.


  6. After an unecessary 6 year Family Court Battle where the taxpayers of Ontario subsidized 5 Illegal Aid Lawyers for the Applicant, I regained possession of my rural home. Hydro one refused to Change the Billing to the occupants name without her consent. I was stuck with the Bills for 4 years.
    When I regained possession I drove the 80 miles to check the house and there were 2 Notes from Hydro one stuck in the screen door. The first stated I must contact them within 10 days Or I would face Disconnection. The 2nd Note stated that they Did Disconnect the power.
    1) Hydro one has both my phone numbers and address in Thunder Bay as they had even bought a sliver of land from me to move the Hydro lines over because of the new Four Lane Highway.
    2) This is blatant gender bias and discrimination.
    3) The basement was flooded because the sump pump was unable to operate.
    4) Their 2 Notes jammed in the door is an obvious indication that the property owner has NoT been there.


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