Ratepayers still have no option but to buy power from NSPI
HALIFAX, NS – Progressive Conservative leader Jamie Baillie says Premier McNeil broke Nova Scotian’s trust, not Nova Scotia Power’s monopoly.
Today, the Utility and Review Board approved the fees Nova Scotia Power will charge renewable companies to sell power directly to customers (attached). These fees include a Distribution Fee, an Energy Balancing Fee, a Standby Service Fee and a Market Transition Fee, among other charges to be collected by Nova Scotia Power.
As feared, these high fees will make it nearly impossible for any power producer to compete with Nova Scotia Power for its customers.
“Premier McNeil promised Nova Scotians a choice of where they buy their power,” says Baillie. “Today’s ruling confirms that is not likely to happen any time soon.”
The ruling confirms fears raised by renewable energy producers over the last six months and flies in the face of Energy Minister Michel Samson’s assurances that his legislation would create a cost-effective choice for consumers.
“We are no further ahead today than we were when Premier McNeil made this promise. Nothing has changed,” says Baillie. “We still pay the highest power rates in the country. We still pay the efficiency fee. Nova Scotia Power still has a monopoly.”
Despite this being Premier McNeil’s signature election promise, he refused to be part of the UARB hearing where it was discussed.
“People trusted Stephen McNeil to keep his promise. That trust has been broken,” says Baillie. “The Liberals’ lack of vision is setting us back. What Nova Scotia needs is a real plan for electricity ratepayers, not another broken cynical election promise.”