May 2, 2011 (Cornwall, Ontario) - Cornwall Electric customers will experience a moderate rate increase of 3.26% effective July 1, 2011. Michael Pescod, Regional Manager of Cornwall Electric, attributed the increase to the contractual provisions included in the long-term wholesale electricity supply contract negotiated with Hydro Quebec in 2008 and a billing adjustment by Hydro Quebec for energy previously supplied and consumed but not invoiced. Following this increase, the rates charged by Cornwall Electric continue to be less than rates charged five years ago.
As previously announced by the Provincial Government, Cornwall Electric eligible residential and small business customers will also receive the new Ontario Clean Energy Benefit which provides a 10% savings on electricity costs. These savings will be applied retroactively from January 1, 2011 to the first invoice of May consumption and are expected to continue for the next five years.
“Like all other utilities in Ontario, the cost of electricity in Cornwall is passed through to its customers. The long term contract with Hydro Quebec provides rate stability and ensures reliability of supply for the remaining contract term to December 2019,” said Pescod. “With recently announced rate increases elsewhere in the Province, Cornwall Electric rates compare favorably to surrounding electrical utilities”.
The wholesale cost of electricity represents approximately 85% of the customer’s total bill. The remaining 15% represents the distribution charges. The distribution charges pay for Cornwall Electric to deliver power safely and reliably from the Cedars Rapids Transmission lines to the customers’ homes and businesses and to provide for system maintenance and capital equipment replacement. Cornwall Electric will invest approximately four million dollars in system expansions and capital replacements in 2011. Cornwall Electric customers do not pay the debt retirement charge paid by the majority of customers in Ontario.
Cornwall Electric promotes the wise use of electricity and urges customers to conserve energy and consider changing to energy efficient appliances, lighting, shower heads, and installing programmable thermostats, weather stripping and pool pump timers. These measures will reduce consumption and help manage the cost of the service.
Cornwall Electric supplies electricity to 23,800 customers in the City of Cornwall, South Glengarry, South Stormont, and the Ontario portion of the Mohawk Territory of Akwesasne. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of FortisOntario, headquartered in Fort Erie with operations in distribution and transmission serving approximately 65,000 customers in Fort Erie, Port Colborne, Cornwall, Gananoque and the Algoma district of Ontario. FortisOntario is 100% owned by Fortis Inc. of St. John’s, Newfoundland. For more information on FortisOntario, please visit the corporate website at www.fortisontario.com.
For further information contact:
Mr. Michael Pescod
Phone: (613) 932-0123, ext. 4228
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