NDP proposes plan to cut hydro rates by up to 30%

Ontario's NDP is proposing a host of changes to the energy system that the party says could save ratepayers up to 30 per cent on their hydro bills.

Plan includes scrapping mandatory time-of-use pricing, cancelling contracts, buying back Hydro One

Ontario's NDP is proposing a host of changes to the energy system that the party says could save ratepayers up to 30 per cent on their hydro bills. (Mike Crawley/CBC)

Ontario's NDP is proposing a host of changes to the energy system that the party says could save ratepayers up to 30 per cent on their hydro bills.

The party wants to see mandatory time-of-use pricing eliminated, saying it hasn't reduced peak demand by as much as the government intended and is an added stressor for Ontarians.

The NDP also wants to take a fee paid by Ontario Power Generation to reduce the delivery charge for rural Hydro One customers so they pay the same charge as urban Hydro One customers.

Also included in the proposal is a plan to buy back the 30 per cent of shares in Hydro One the government has sold, which the NDP says would cost between $3.3 billion and $4.1 billion.

The NDP says that could be financed through the province's share of its profit from Hydro One over no more than eight years.

As the utility is transitioned back to public ownership, the NDP says a tax benefit given to Hydro One in the process of
privatization could be used to subsidize a drop in bills of 3.2 per cent.

The NDP's plan also includes establishing a panel to examine cancelling or renegotiating long-term power contracts at
above-market rates, capping profit margins for private power companies and making permanent the Liberal government's eight-per-cent rebate on bills while also negotiating with Ottawa to remove the federal portion of HST from bills.
   

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