A proposed regulatory clarification would ensure that all residential customers benefit equally from the Ontario Electricity Rebate (OER). A recent posting on Ontario’s regulatory registry suggests the government will explicitly state that separately metered hydro accounts for common areas of multi-residential buildings will qualify for the rebate, which currently provides an 18.9 per cent discount on the pre-tax costs of electricity consumption, transmission and distribution.
Common area accounts registering more than 250,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of consumption annually have been somewhat in limbo since the provincial government introduced the OER in November 2019. They receive the rebate under a grandfathering provision that’s slated to end on October 31, 2021, after which, the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) has determined they do not meet the criteria set out in the enabling regulation. Meanwhile, the rebate does apply on all the same electricity-using elements for any amount of consumption in a bulk-metered building, where a single hydro accounts covers the common areas and all residential suites.
Proposed regulatory amendments would redefine eligibility for the rebate to address the uncertainty around large common area accounts, mobile home parks with year-round residents and multi-residential formats with shared kitchen and bathroom facilities. The Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines is accepting comments until July 26, 2021.