Information evening on the Charter Challenge

Join the Oppose Belwood Wind Farm group on Tuesday, October 8th for an important meeting about legal strategy.

Here from leader Janet Vallery:

Over the past several years many rural communities have been investigating their legal options in the fight against wind industrialization. Recently there has been a development that could be beneficial to all communities led by Barrister Julian Falconer.  The case is based on the merits of a Charter Challenge of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Section 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms states that: “Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of the person and the right not to be deprived thereof except in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice.”  The Appeal states the right to security of a person and principles of fundamental justice have been violated.

Julian will be joining us in Belwood by teleconference to provide details on the case and the progress made to date. 

This is an opportunity to get first hand information on the status of the case as well as to discuss how we can work together to raise the necessary funds to support it.  The Belwood group is organizing this meeting because they believe the claim is a viable legal option.  After the presentation, their community will vote to determine financial support.  Other communities at risk from wind turbines are welcome to participate as the legal action has the potential to benefit all of us in rural Ontario.

Place:       Pine Meadows Retirement Community (Grand Hall)
Address:  8473 Wellington County Road 19 (between Fergus and Belwood on the north side of Lake Belwood)
Time:       7:00pm
Date:        Tuesday October 8th

If you plan on attending please contact Janet Vallery at jvallery@everus.ca

The view from Brinston: aren’t they “green”?

A local pilot photographed the activity from the air, and we bring you a photo of what a turbine construction site looks like from above. This is just ONE turbine and actual construction on it has not really begun.

 

What’s interesting about Brinston is that the wind power project, which was opposed by local residents, represented by WCO member South Branch Wind Opposition Group, will be up and running next spring, just months before Ontario’s municipal election in October, 2014.

By then, residents will be experiencing the brunt of what it’s like to live near 500-foot, 3-megawatt turbines.

We’re sure that experience will help them make decisions as to whom to vote for on the South Dundas Council. Despite numerous well-researched presentations by local resident, many councillors just threw up their hands and said, there is nothing we can do. Or worse, they actively supported the power project, citing the wind industry claims of job creation and benefits to the community.

Time will tell.

69!!! Not a Willing Host communities in Ontario

Billings Township (on Manitoulin Island) passed a resolution on September 16 to the effect it will not accept the installation of any industrial wind turbines.The council said it required assurance that the power generators were “benign.”

This is the most recent municipality to declare its non-acceptance of huge wind power projects since the Premier first stated earlier this year that her government would only put wind power projects in communities that were willing. It is important to note that these 69 communities are members of the 90 or so Ontario communities that could be involved in wind power.

 

 

 

NextEra “refining” Jericho project

NextEra has announced it is “refining” its Jericho wind power project and plans to hold a series of public meetings to document the changes. The meetings are:

October 21 5-8 PM Centennial Hall Watford

October 22 5-8 PM Legacy Recreation Centre Thedford

October 23 5-8 PM Ailsa Craig Community Centre

 

The London Free Press has a story on the changes and the company spokesperson comments here

Ontario’s “stranded debt”

From Parker Gallant (who is speaking tonight in Shelburne)

Questions, questions.

  The Ontario Electricity Financial Corporation (OEFC) finally had its March 31, 2012 annual report

released a few days ago. The financial statements audit letter from the Auditor General is dated June

21, 2012. Why it took 15 months for the Finance Minister to table the report is not known—by now

the March 31, 2013 annual report should also have appeared.

   In any event, the “stranded debt” which started life on April 1, 1999 at $19.4 billion has been further reduced and as of the end of March 31, 2012 stood at $12.3 billion. OEFC has generated gross revenue of $49.5 billion since its inception, April 1, 1999 to the end of March 31, 2012. Of that amount, $11.9 billion came from ratepayers under the guise of the “Debt Reduction Charge” (DRC). What this means is, the $6.1 billion reduction in stranded debt gobbled up that $49.5 billion in gross revenue and, further, each $1 billion reduction in the stranded debt required $8.1 billion in revenue.

   The original debt on OEFC books April 1, 1999, was $31.2 billionit had reduced by $2.4 billion as of March 31, 2012 when it stood at $28.8 billion. That meager debt reduction required $20.6 billion of revenue per $1 billion of debt reduction.

   If we look at the “Residual Stranded Debt,” originally calculated as $7.8 billion, we can see from the following chart that it has reduced by $3.3 billion. 

In other words, in 13 years, the Residual Stranded Debt has required $14.6 billion of revenue per $1 billion of reduction.

 

 

Ontario’s ratepayers were told the DRC would be around for only a few years. This report would seem to indicate, however, 13 years later, that it will take many more years before it finally disappears. To retire the remaining “Residual Stranded Debt” could require $65 billion in gross revenue to OEFC before it is finally paid off. At the current average of approximately $4 billion in annual revenue, it will take 16 years and another $16 million of DRC charges to ratepayers before that happens.

   Perhaps the government should change the corporate name of OEFC. My suggestion is to

change the name to “Ontario Evading Financial Control.” That way, they get to keep the

acronym and retain any inherent future marketing value in its use.

 

Parker Gallant

September 24, 2013

The opinions expressed here are those of the author and not Wind Concerns Ontario.

Charter Challenge info meeting October 8

Join the Oppose Belwood Wind Farm group on Tuesday, October 8th for an important meeting about legal strategy.

 

Here from leader Janet Vallery:

Over the past several years many rural communities have been investigating their legal options in the fight against wind industrialization. Recently there has been a development that could be beneficial to all communities led by Barrister Julian Falconer.  The case is based on the merits of a Charter Challenge of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

 

Section 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms states that: “Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of the person and the right not to be deprived thereof except in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice.”  The Appeal states the right to security of a person and principles of fundamental justice have been violated.

 

Julian will be joining us in Belwood by teleconference to provide details on the case and the progress made to date.

 

This is an opportunity to get first hand information on the status of the case as well as to discuss how we can work together to raise the necessary funds to support it.  The Belwood group is organizing this meeting because they believe the claim is a viable legal option.  After the presentation, their community will vote to determine financial support.  Other communities at risk from wind turbines are welcome to participate as the legal action has the potential to benefit all of us in rural Ontario.

 

Place:       Pine Meadows Retirement Community (Grand Hall)

Address:  8473 Wellington County Road 19 (between Fergus and Belwood on the north side of Lake Belwood)

Time:       7:00pm

Date:        Tuesday October 8th

 

If you plan on attending please contact Janet Vallery at jvallery@everus.ca

Ontario’s electricity Residual Stranded Debt—another 16 years til paid off?


Questions, questions.
  The Ontario Electricity Financial Corporation (OEFC) finally had its March 31, 2012 annual report
released a few days ago. The financial statements audit letter from the Auditor General is dated June
21, 2012. Why it took 15 months for the Finance Minister to table the report is not known—by now
the March 31, 2013 annual report should also have appeared.
   In any event, the “stranded debt” which started life on April 1, 1999 at $19.4 billion has been further reduced and as of the end of March 31, 2012 stood at $12.3 billion. OEFC has generated gross revenue of $49.5 billion since its inception, April 1, 1999 to the end of March 31, 2012. Of that amount, $11.9 billion came from ratepayers under the guise of the “Debt Reduction Charge” (DRC). What this means is, the $6.1 billion reduction in stranded debt gobbled up that $49.5 billion in gross revenue and, further, each $1 billion reduction in the stranded debt required $8.1 billion in revenue.
   The original debt on OEFC books April 1, 1999, was $31.2 billionit had reduced by $2.4 billion as of March 31, 2012 when it stood at $28.8 billion. That meager debt reduction required $20.6 billion of revenue per $1 billion of debt reduction.
   If we look at the “Residual Stranded Debt,” originally calculated as $7.8 billion, we can see from the following chart that it has reduced by $3.3 billion.

 
In other words, in 13 years, the Residual Stranded Debt has required $14.6 billion of revenue per $1 billion of reduction.

  Ontario’s ratepayers were told the DRC would be around for only a few years. This report would seem to indicate, however, 13 years later, that it will take many more years before it finally disappears. To retire the remaining “Residual Stranded Debt” could require $65 billion in gross revenue to OEFC before it is finally paid off. At the current average of approximately $4 billion in annual revenue, it will take 16 years and another $16 million of DRC charges to ratepayers before that happens.

   Perhaps the government should change the corporate name of OEFC. My suggestion is to
change the name to “Ontario Evading Financial Control.” That way, they get to keep the
acronym and retain any inherent future marketing value in its use.
Parker Gallant
September 24, 2013
The opinions expressed here are those of the author and not Wind Concerns Ontario.

Hydro One leaves sick man in the dark

Really, honestly, if all you people who live in the country would just LEAVE already and get a 400-square-foot condo in Toronto, these stories wouldn’t happen.

Hydro One removes transformer, leaves sick man in dark

Simon Kent

By ,Toronto Sun

  Updated:

TORONTO – Hydro One, how could you?
Tony Kenny is too polite to ask but somebody has to pose the question.
On Sept. 5 he contacted the power utility to complain about frequent, unexplained power outages at his small farm just outside Peterborough in the community of Bailieboro.
Kenny pointed out that the power transformer on his property was failing and he wrote them it was “ancient … along with the original poles which clearly say ‘Property of Ontario Hydro.’ ”
Kenny respectfully asked for a little help. He wrote: “Because Hydro powers the only source for water for myself, a necessity of life, and animals on the farm, could you please look into replacing the transformer and poles before there is a bigger problem?”
The bigger problem being that the supply of power is not just a necessity of life for his animals, there is another reason. Kenny lives on a disability pension.
He has a chronic heart condition called dilated cardiomyopathy. It means he has medical needs that can only be sustained by the provision of electricity on a regular, 24/7 basis.
Kenny lives at the constant risk of cardiac arrhythmia and/or stoke. This has been compounded with late-onset adult diabetes, meaning he cannot work and Kenny’s only source of income is the Ontario Disability Support Program.
This was all outlined in his written plea to Hydro One for a better supply of electricity.
Two days later he had his reply.
The utility wrote to tell the 51-year-old they couldn’t help.
“Thank you for contacting us about power outages in your area,” the letter opened.
“Unfortunately, Hydro One cannot control all interference on our system which can cause power interruptions or voltage irregularities and from time to time, short power outages will occur on the system. Therefore, we cannot guarantee a constant supply of electricity.
“We strongly advise anyone that is dependent on electrically powered medical equipment to have a back-up generation source or alternative arrangements in the event of a power outage.
“As per our conditions of service, Hydro One cannot guarantee a continuous or constant supply of power and will not be liable for any damages caused by lack of power, a power outage or surge.”
It didn’t end there. On Sept. 10, Kenny claims without his knowledge and without notice or permission to enter his property, Hydro One workers arrived and took the transformer away.
They didn’t install a new one in its place.
Kenny has been in the dark ever since — literally and figuratively — and carts water by hand in the absence of power for his electric pumps.
“I don’t know what to do now,” Kenny said. “I contacted my MPP’s office and Jeff Leal couldn’t help. I live on my own and worry what would happen if my health started failing and I couldn’t raise help.
“I have lived here since 1995 and never had a problem with Hydro One, always paid my bills, but as soon as I complained, that was it.
“Nobody from Hydro One has even contacted me and given me an explanation for their actions.”
When the Toronto Sun approached the utility about the Kenny case, a Hydro One spokesman said they would only offer a comment if Kenny supplied a signed disclosure form via e-mail to look into his account.
“Which is great, but I don’t have the power on so I have no computer — so how can I fulfil that request?” Kenny retorted.
In a final twist, Kenny says there is one reminder of his dealings with Hydro One to remind him of the utility’s unintended but ironic approach to customer service.
There on the pole where the old transformer used to stand is a brand new smart meter; alone, unused and ultimately totally useless.
As Tony Kenny is willing to attest, much like Hydro One itself.

***************

Rural dwellers are not the only consumers who feel powerless when it comes to Hydro One.
Cottagers allege they suffer discriminatory pricing at the hands of the monopoly supplier, according to Rose Mary Rosada.
“If your cottage is not your primary residence … you are billed for delivery charges at approximately 2 1/2 times that of a residence where the occupants live full time, even if they are next door to you, the cottager,” she said.
“On the road where our vacation property is, there are about 12 homes — four of which are full-time residents and the other eight are seasonal.
“Why is it Hydro One’s business whether this is my full-time or part-time residence (my time is split 50/50 at both) … Bell Canada charges the same rate no matter how many residences you own.
“The only way Hydro One will change the way they bill my vacation property is if I have my mailing address for Canada Revenue Agency, my driver’s licence, etc. changed to my vacation property address.
“It’s none of Hydro One’s business and this is an invasion of my privacy on their part to be demanding this.”
Hydro One would not directly address the claim of discriminatory pricing other than to direct us to their statement on seasonal property pricing versus year-round home.
It says in part: “A delivery rate is the price you pay to have your electricity delivered to your seasonal residence. If you have a second home such as a cottage, chalets or camp area that is serviced by Hydro One you are a seasonal customer.”
The understanding being that seasonal means you pay more.
Why do they do that? Because they can. As a monopoly, Hydro One can do whatever it likes.