Ontario Electricity Support Program (OESP)
The proposed Ontario Electricity Support Program would provide assistance directly to eligible low-income electricity consumers following the conclusion of the Ontario Clean Energy Benefit on December 31, 2015.
Eligibility for the new program is based on two criteria:
- Household income
- Household size
Based on income level and household size, those qualified would receive a predetermined credit on their electricity bills, ranging from $20 to $50 per month. For example, a family of four with an annual income of less than $28,000, would be eligible for a $38 monthly credit -- a total of about $455 per year.
|Stepped sliding scale - benefit level||Household size|
|1 person||2 persons||3 persons||4 persons||5 persons||6 persons||7+ persons|
|Income bracket||< $28,000||$20||$30||$34||$38||$42||$46||$50|
|$28,001 - $39,000||-||-||$30||$34||$38||$42||$46|
|$39,001 - $48,000||-||-||-||-||$30||$34||$38|
|$48,001 - $52,000||-||-||-||-||-||-||$30|
For many low-income Ontarians, paying their monthly electricity bill can be a major and ongoing challenge. In fact, in comparison to other electricity consumers in the province, low-income Ontarians spend a proportionately higher percentage of their income on electricity each month. For example, the electricity bill for a typical household consuming 800 kilowatt hours of electricity per month represents on average ten per cent of the total income of a household with an annual income of $20,000, while amounting to only two per cent or less on average of the total income of a household with an annual income of $100,000 or more in 2016.
Current Energy Assistance and Energy Conservation Programs:
- Helps electricity and natural gas customers with limited financial resources.
- LEAP has provided nearly $12.5 million in emergency financial assistance to more than 35,000 low-income electricity and natural gas customers throughout Ontario (Source: Ontario Energy Board’s 2013/14 Annual Report).
- Low-income customers can receive up to $500 in emergency assistance for their electricity bills ($600 if the home is heated electrically) and $500 for gas bills.
- Assists low-income participants with upgrading the electrical efficiency of their households at no cost to participants.
- This program has been in place since 2011 and reached almost 27,000 homes in 2013.
- Union and Enbridge gas also provide audits and energy efficiency upgrades at no cost to income eligible natural gas customers.
- Helps low- to moderate-income individuals and families with the sales tax they pay on energy and with property taxes.
- The OEPTC is paid monthly as part of the Ontario Trillium Benefit delivered through the income tax system.
- A refundable tax credit for low- to middle-income individuals and families living in northern Ontario, effective for 2010 and subsequent years.
- The NOEC is paid monthly as part of the Ontario Trillium Benefit and is delivered through the income tax system.
- Helps Ontario families, farms and small businesses through the transition to a cleaner, modern electricity system by providing a 10 per cent rebate on applicable electricity charges and taxes (limited to the first 3,000 kilowatt hours consumed each month).
- This program is helping over four million residential consumers and over 400,000 small businesses and farms until December 31, 2015.
For more information, please visit the Ontario Energy Board`s website at www.ontarioenergyboard.ca/oesp.