As the Globe and Mail reported last night, Clare Copeland, chairman of Tony’s Hydro (formerly Toronto Hydro) is continuing to negotiate through the newspapers for a reprieve from the Ontario Energy Board’s recent decision that the utility work within the rules that apply to the rest of Ontario’s electric distribution utilities. The application the OEB turned down would have increased average household rates by $14.43/month (by 2014), an increase of 47% over 2011 rates. (correction: The 1$14.43/month increase by 2014 quoted here includes rate riders, which I should not have included in the context of this posting. Without riders, the increase by 2014 as applied for was $11.78/month, an increase of 38.7% over current rates excluding riders.)
Copeland provides various arguments to support his negotiating position. One is that “since 2005, TH’s distribution rates have remained virtually flat”. Copeland’s cherry picking of 2005 as the basis for rate comparisons is telling. Rates declined modestly from 2005 through 2007 as a result of declining interest rates, controlled spending by the utility, and the unwinding of an exogenous rate rider related to historic regulatory assets. Considering purely distribution rates since 2007 and filtering out the exogenous rate riders, residential consumers in 2007 paid $24.40 per month for 800 kWh of consumption whereas in 2011 the cost for the same usage was $30.41 — an increase of 24.6%. Inflation over this period was 7.3%.
Here is Copeland’s letter to the OEB: Copeland – to OEB – Jan 20 2012
It was my understanding that Toronto residents would have an increase of $5 a month over the next three years. Is the figure you mentioned (average of 14.43/month) referring to payments over three years condensed into one year? You did not mention the duration, which if my understanding is correct, you are being misleading.
Good point. I added an edit in parentheses clarifying the rate impact TH was proposing.
So the $14.43 figure represents the additional amount payable by an average customer as of 2014?
What does the $5 figure represent?
Based on the TH Chair’s latest letter to the OEB, it would appear that TH is sticking to its position and that the only way to get a more objective view of the matter is to have a new set of people in charge.
$14.43/month is the amount of the increase requested with the rate riders included. So that would be what the customer would see on their final bill if it was approved.
The $5/month claim is just junk spin from the Tony’s Hydro.