The future of Hydro One’s seasonal rate class remains unclear as the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) accepts submissions from OEB staff and other involved parties in response to Hydro One’s proposal to maintain seasonal rates.
Hydro One filed its updated seasonal report in mid-July, which offered an alternative to the OEB’s March 2015 decision to eliminate the seasonal class and move customers to residential rate classes according to their location density. The OEB issued a procedural order on Sept. 17, which noted that that requests to reconsider an earlier OEB decision should be made through a motion to review. The OEB stated that they would treat Section 5 of Hydro One’s seasonal report as a motion to review the elimination of the seasonal class and asked Hydro One to submit additional material in support of the motion, which the company provided on Oct. 1. The OEB then determined that it would accept written submissions from OEB staff and other involved parties, known as intervenors, in regards to Hydro One’s submission.
Intervenors are individuals or groups that have permission from the OEB to actively participate in a public hearing about a utility’s application. Intervenors often represent customer groups such as the Federation of Ontario Cottagers’ Associations (FOCA), which opposes the elimination of the seasonal class alongside Hydro One.
“As an intervenor, FOCA is arguing against the elimination of the Seasonal Class, because the September 2015 OEB decision to move to an all-fixed delivery rate already accomplishes the stated goal of having low volume seasonal customers pay a fair share of costs,” said FOCA in a letter to members.
OEB staff and intervenors were ordered to file any submissions with the OEB by Dec. 19 while Hydro One has until Jan. 9 to file any reply submission the company has to offer.