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  • Introduction

    The Ontario Government predicts a 1500 MW gap in electricity supply by the year 2025. To help fill that gap, they are trying to create a "conservation culture". To meet electricity demand during peak periods, the province must bring additional power generation online or import it from other jurisdictions. Many of these power sources are more expensive to operate and create additional pollution. Lessening electricity consumption during peak periods reduces Ontario's reliance on these sources of electricity generation.

    Your old electricity meter measured the total amount of electricity used over an entire billing period and was read manually. Your Smart Meter will record your total electricity consumption hour by hour and send that information to Bluewater Power through a wireless network. With the ability to measure when electricity is used, different prices can apply at different times of the day. With time-of-use pricing, you will have a new way to manage your electricity use and your bills. Time of Use (TOU) pricing better reflects the way the electricity market works. Prices rise and fall over the course of the day and tend to drop overnight and on weekends based on the amount of supply available and our levels of demand.

    *The Ontario Energy Board (OEB) sets prices for electricity under the Regulated Price Plan (RPP) . They are based on the electricity supply costs forecast for the year ahead, and any adjustments required due to differences between what was paid and what supplies actually cost over the previous period.

    Bluewater Power began its implementation of the Smart Meter program in 2006, with the bulk of effort occurring during the period from 2009 to 2011. The cost of implementing Smart Meters include the cost of the meter itself, the infrastructure required to read the meter, development of processes and systems to store the data, as well as integration with the utility’s billing system in order to permit Time of Use pricing.

    Over the implementation period, Bluewater Power has collected interim charges from customers in order to finance the implementation. Most recently, Bluewater Power collected $2 per month from customers. That interim charge ceased on April 30, 2012 and Bluewater Power immediately took steps to seek approval to recover the final costs for the period up to December 31, 2012.

    In November 2012, Bluewater Power received approval for the final disposition of our smart meter costs to recover the costs of the new smart meters, installation of the meters and changes to the billing system. The residential rate of $1.94 per month concluded on April 30, 2013. However, the GS<50 rate of $5.94 will continue until October 31, 2014.

    The rates that were approved by the Ontario Energy Board effective May 1, 2013, to be included in the Delivery line item for residential customers is $1.47 and will be in place until April 30, 2015. The rate for Small commercial customer’s (General Service <50 kW) is $4.66 and will be collected until April 30, 2017.

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