Ontario Clean Energy Benefit (OCEB) to kick in next month
By Alyssa Dalton
There’s just one day left until the New Year and the new Ontario Clean Energy Benefit (OCEB) kicks in. Effective January 1, 2011, Ontario is taking 10 percent off monthly electricity bills for families, farms and businesses to help them manage rising electricity prices for the next five years.
The OCEB will help more than four million Ontarians, and more than 400,000 small businesses, farms and others through these lean times.
“Since 2003, our government has made the necessary investments to build a cleaner, more efficient electricity system and ensure the lights stay on. We are helping Ontario families manage rising costs, especially for electricity, as we continue the transition to cleaner power and manage well in difficult times,” said Dwight Duncan‚ minister of Finance.
The province will also be investing in several other clean power initiatives, which include:
– Moving the Time-of-Use off-peak period for electricity to 7 p.m., which will provide an additional 10 hours every week in the lowest cost period.
– Helping seniors and low- and middle-income Ontarians through a proposed expansion to the Ontario Energy and Property Tax Credit, providing up to $900 back, and up to $1,025 for eligible seniors.
– Helping more than 250,000 northern families save costs through the Northern Ontario Energy Credit, which provides single Ontarians age 18 and older with a credit of up to $130, and families, including single parents, with up to $200.
– Helping large industrials and manufacturers conserve energy, save on electricity costs and increase their competitiveness through the Industrial Conservation Initiative, starting in January 2011.
In 2010-11, the estimated cost of the OCEB is $300 million, with an estimated full-year cost of $1.1 billion next year. These costs are accommodated within Ontario’s fiscal plan as a result of the government’s prudent approach to managing its finances.