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Friday, January 26, 2018

OEB Meeting on Proposed Hike by Westario Power

Walkerton | by John Divinski  

It was billed as a community meeting by the Ontario Energy Board to talk about a distribution rate increase proposed by Westario Power.

Westario has applied to hike its electricity distribution rates by $2.78 a month.
Vice President of Operations for Westario David Leonce says his company has to prove its case to the Ontario Energy Board so that they continue to supply safe and reliable energy to its customers through upgrades to its infrastructure.
Ontario Energy Board legal counsel James Sidlofsky says it will likely take another 9-months before a final decision is made.
But wait a minute.
It seems the people at the meeting weren't particularly concerned about the hike.
They wanted to talk about why, when they conserve energy, their bill doesn't reflect the effort.
They wanted to talk about making the monthly bills easier to read.
They even talked about smart meters.
Leonce says there may not be any concern about the possible distribution rate increase now but they may get questions later.
He's confident the company's "application speaks for itself."
The OEB's Sidofsky says he wasn't concerned about the lack of questions on the possible rate hike either.
He says he was glad to see the good turnout and the discussion that did take place.
Several municipal politicians were on hand for the proceedings along with Bruce Grey Owen Sound Conservative MPP Bill Walker, who felt Westario explained their rationale for an increase very well.
Walker took a shot at the provincial government saying, "If you're going to continue to do things like wind turbines and solar panels that are intermittent and pay 80-cents a kilowatt instead of 3 (cents) you can get from Niagara Falls or 6 from Bruce Power, your rates are going to continue to go up."
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