Ontario Energy Board

The Ontario Energy Board (OEB) is the final arbiter of what you pay for electricity in Ontario. The local utility (Lakefront Utilities in Cobourg) submits a proposal for electrical rates and this is either approved by the OEB or Lakefront is required to modify their proposal. Most of the filings make for dull reading but there are sometimes interesting items such as the disclosure that Lakefront overbilled one customer by $900,000 or that accounting “issues” caused Cobourg rates to rise by $737,547 in 2015. If you want to search further go to Ontario Energy Board Advanced Regulatory Document Search

If you would like to see the full details of the “accounting issues” that were finally admitted to by Mayor Gil Brocanier, all of the gory details are located here. Note that the audit report documents not just the single error to which the Mayor admitted but a litany of errors that occurred over several years. If you do not have time to read the entire “confidential” report ,one of the important conclusions is in Section 8.2.2:

“Due to the mistakes noted above, the invoice line items charge type 142 on IESO invoices to Lakefront Utilities for the periods of 2011 and 2012 were incorrect. The impact on the settlement with IESO is in the total amount of $737,547 owing by Lakefront Utilities to the IESO. It appears that Lakefront Utilities must now collect, from its customers, an amount of $737,547 due to these mistakes…

Mayor Gil Brocanier was very proud of the energy savings that resulted from the new street lights in Cobourg. Unfortunately, Lakefront Utilities applied to raise the cost of electricity for everyone in order to recover the “lost revenue from installing more energy efficient lighting”. See file for more information.  

For more interesting reading see this report (starting on page 27) for the explanation of how a “technical error” resulted in overbilling Horizon Plastics for four years. On July 27, 2007 Lakefront Utilities refunded $1,428,792.20 to Horizon. The refund was recovered by increasing the rates for all other electricity users.