Delivering Better Value for Electricity Consumers
Ontario is planning to introduce legislation which would, if passed, merge the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) and the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) into a single agency responsible for overseeing the electricity market, procuring new electricity supply and playing a key role along with the government in electricity planning.
Benefits of the proposed merger:
The proposed merger would:
- Create efficiencies and savings by eliminating duplication, streamlining processes and taking advantage of expert skills within each agency.
- Deliver on the government's commitment to improve efficiency and help reduce costs in the sector and to ratepayers by modernizing the province's out-dated energy system.
- Save ratepayers up to $25 million a year or 15% of the agencies' current budgets
Responsibilities of the proposed new agency:
The proposed new agency would be responsible for:
- Procurement and market operations, providing opportunities to design contracts that better align with the existing market rules and benefit consumers without prejudicing any market participant or contract holder.
- Creating an electricity system that is more responsive to changing conditions, with an open and transparent planning process.
The OPA and IESO would each continue to operate as separate organizations pending approval and proclamation of the legislation.
A Transition Advisor, Paul Vessey, would report to the Boards of Directors and make recommendations on the best way to amalgamate the skills and functions of the OPA and IESO. The Boards are responsible for ensuring the organizations are functioning at full capacity during the transition.
During the transition period, the agencies and the Transition Advisor would work to develop a change management and human resources strategy and identify recommended efficiencies.
If the legislation is passed, the interim structure would be replaced with the new agency and a single CEO would be appointed to head the new agency.
Independent Electricity System Operator
- Manages Ontario's high-voltage electricity system and operates the wholesale electricity market. It also oversees the smart metering initiative in the province.
Ontario Power Authority
- Responsible for long-term planning for electricity supply in Ontario, facilitates conservation, and manages contracts for new generation, including through the Feed-In-Tariff program.
Transition Advisor - Biography
Paul Vessey has over four decades of experience working in the banking and financial services industry. He recently retired from TD Bank Group as Executive Vice President of Product Management, U.S. Personal and Commercial Banking. Before joining TD Bank, Mr. Vessey served as in other senior roles in the banking and financial industry, including Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Visa U.S.A.
Mr. Vessey is a graduate of Durham College of Applied Arts Technology and attended the Advanced Management Program at Harvard University's Graduate School of Business Administration. He currently serves on several boards of directors, including at Counsel Corporation, Durham College Foundation and Kingsway College School, where he is the Chair of the Board of Governors.