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Utilities Kingston supports provincial suspension of time-of-use rates

Photo by Tori Stafford.

Utilities Kingston is working quickly to implement rate changes after the Ontario government announced a 45-day suspension of time-of-use electricity rates.

On Tuesday, Mar. 24, 2020, Premier Doug Ford announced the suspension as part of the government’s plan to provide relief to citizens and businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. For the 45-day period, time-of-use electricity rates will be suspended, holding electricity prices to the off-peak rate of 10.1 cents-per-kilowatt-hour, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. By switching to a fixed off-peak rate, time-of-use customers will see rate reductions of over 50 per cent compared to on-peak rates, according to the provincial government. The change will take place immediately to provide electricity rate relief for families, small businesses, and farms paying time-of-use rates.

“During this unprecedented time, we are providing much-needed relief to Ontarians, specifically helping those who are doing the right thing by staying home and small businesses that have closed or are seeing fewer customers,” said Premier Doug Ford. “By adopting a fixed, 24/7 off-peak rate, we are making things a little easier during these difficult times and putting more money in people’s pockets for other important priorities and necessities.”

This change will be applied automatically to electricity bills, and customers will not need to fill out any applications to ensure they’re taking advantage of the discounted rate. Those with Utilities Kingston said they are currently implementing the change.

“We are pleased to support this provincial decision, to help our customers during this difficult time. Utilities Kingston is taking the necessary steps to implement this rate change on electricity bills,” Utilities Kingston said in an email to Kingstonist.

“We at Utilities Kingston recognize that this is a difficult time for our community and are letting our customers know: we’re here to support you,” the local utility provide continued. “If you are concerned about paying your bill, experiencing hardship, or have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, please call us to discuss extended bill payment options and financial assistance programs.”

This change is on top of the provincial government’s ban on utilities disconnections during the pandemic situation, which Utilities Kingston has extended beyond the government’s timeline.

For more information on financial assistance programs to help with Utilities Kingston bills, click here.

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