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Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Hydro One proposal still up in the air.

Orillia | by Ian MacLennan  

The proposed sale of Orillia Power's distribution arm to Hydro One remains very much on the city's radar.

The proposed sale of Orillia Power's distribution arm to Hydro One remains very much on the city's radar,  even though the Ontario Energy Board refused to hear an appeal of its decision to deny the acquisition.

Mayor Steve Clarke says the proposal was re-submitted, and he continues to tout the benefits the deal will mean to Orillia residents and businesses.

He says they will pay less on the distribution part of their electricity bill than they would have if Orillia Power holds on to the bill.

The proposal is a 1% reduction and a five year freeze in rates,  then an increase in years six through 10, but only at the rate of inflation.

The OEB had concerns about what happens in year 11 and the mayor feels they have addressed that in the re-submission.

Clarke admits if the deal doesn't pass,  Hydro One's plan for an operations centre and provincial warehouse in the city will also be lost.

He says this is a $200 million investment.

And the mayor is quick to point out,  if the OEB refuses to budge,  Orillia Power is long overdue for a rate increase and will have to invest in a lot of infrastructure in a short period of time.

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