Township calls on province to lower hydro rates

BARRY’S BAY – The Township of Madawaska Valley is calling on the Premier Kathleen Wynne to prevent any proposed hydro rate increases and to lower the rates as quickly as possible.  

Council passed a resolution at the March 23 regular meeting. The resolution specifically outlines the rural challenges when it comes to paying current hydro bills. It states that 50 per cent of rural residents are seniors on a fixed income, and they cannot afford the ever-escalating hydro bills.

Madawaska Valley’s resolution calls for a review of provincial policies and their agencies that set Ontario rates for electricity, distribution charges, debt retirement, global adjustment costs and carbon taxes. The township wants to see both rural and urban municipalities involved in the consultation process.

It also encourages municipalities to monitor smart meter electrical fires and/or smart meter malfunctions.

Councillor Elser Lee Faith Archer, who is the chair of the economic development committee, took the resolution under her wing and has been developing it with the help of the CAO/Clerk Craig Kelley.

“This is something that I have had a conversation with John Yakabuski about and he is willing…to speak to it in the provincial legislature,” Archer said.

Council unanimously supported the resolution, which will be circulated to municipalities across Ontario for support.

Get your March 25, 2015 edition of The Valley Gazette to read the full story.