During a press conference Saturday, Ford was asked about the possibility of altering time-of-use rates, which is how the vast majority of hydro customers in the province are charged for electricity.
“That came to cabinet last night and you’ll hear an announcement over the next few days, but we’re going to move quick on that. It’s just one small way of helping people,” Ford said.
When asked for further details as to what is being considered, Ford’s press secretary said, “As the premier has said previously, all options are on the table.”
According to the Ontario Energy Board’s (OEB) website, during the winter period — from Nov. 1 to April 30 — on-peak hours are from 7 a.m to 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on weekdays.
Mid-peak hours are from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., while off-peak hours — in which electricity costs less than half the rate than during on-peak hours — are from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., as well as all weekends and holidays.
A petition on Change.org was created on March 15 calling for a change to the time-of-use rates amid the COVID-19 outbreak. As of Saturday evening, it had over 74,000 signatures.
“We’ve received many requests about lowering electricity prices during this unprecedented time,” the OEB said on its website.
“The Ontario Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines is looking at programs and policies to support electricity customers during the COVID-19 pandemic. We expect that information will be made available in the coming days.”