Paul Miller MPP, Hamilton East—Stoney Creek

Government of Ontario

Miller challenges Premier Wynne on hydro disconnections

Published on March 2, 2017

My question is to the Premier. Jeff lives in Hamilton and is behind on his hydro bill. Had he listened to the Premier, Jeff might have thought he was now safe from winter disconnections. But Jeff pays his hydro bill to a private company that sub-meters his apartment building. The Minister of Energy said on Tuesday that the OEB’s winter disconnection ban included such companies, but yesterday the OEB said the exact opposite, stating in an email that “the OEB’s decision and order does not apply to unit sub-metering providers.”

Can the Premier explain what’s going on?

Well, Speaker, Jeff allows ODSP to manage the payment of his bill, so he can handle it. But Jeff’s hydro bill has been going up so quickly over the last year that ODSP, through no fault of their own, can’t keep up. They pay a predetermined amount each month, based on Jeff’s typical hydro costs. But it hasn’t been enough because bills are going up so quickly. Each time they increase, the monthly payment falls behind. They’re still behind the curve, and arrears are spiralling. Jeff’s neighbours are in the same situation. Many in Hamilton are. Today’s announcement won’t help Jeff or his neighbours.

I’d like to announce today that I’m taking out a second mortgage on my house so my grandkids can pay their hydro bill. What will this government do to help people climb out from the hole that is being dug by this province and this Premier?

(Hansard: March 2, 2017)