Members of the Fortis BC Management team met with RDOS directors today and they all appear to be in agreement on one thing….. but not another……
The two tier power rate system has not worked well and should be dropped. They seem to agree on that but…..
Fortis BC will proposed to the Utilities Commission that the old system be phased out over five years.
Most directors of the Regional District indicated that it should be dropped immediately but at a cost to the majority of power users in the Fortis jurisdiction.
If the BC Utilities Commission buys into the idea all of us or most of us will subsidize in some way “over consumers” – those that consume a lot of electricity. Those people mostly live in rural areas with no alternate fuel like GAS.
Under the phasing out of the two tiered system 70 percent of customers will pay more. One director (Michael Brydon) said it is a bit of a misnomer to refer to a flat rate. “It’s flat on a unit basis but those without alternatives or properly insulated homes will continue to pay a lot of money for power while those with alternatives or better built homes can control costs of heating.” said Brydon.
Corey Sinclair, Manager, Regulatory Affairs Fortis BC told directors – that the two tier system was invented by the government in a way to force some efficiencies but the ability to pay is not in the matrix. Once the total cost of operations of power companies is determined the BCUC sets rates to gather that amount of money.
There will still be some level of incentives offered – for example those consumers that chose a (time of use rate – night hours when peak consumption is not occurring). The average electrical power customer will pay 1 to 2.6% more for five years.
The bottom line at the moment is that the RDOS has decided not to seek intervener status at hearings scheduled this year. It will however support the work of the Anarchist Mtn. Community Association which has been fighting the two tier system for many years.
The RDOS seems to believe the fight is over.