Ontario Energy Board accepts Assurance of Voluntary Compliance from North Bay Hydro Distribution Limited

The Ontario Energy Board (OEB) has accepted an Assurance of Voluntary Compliance (AVC) from licensed electricity distributor North Bay Hydro Distribution Limited (North Bay Hydro).

Under the terms of this AVC, North Bay Hydro acknowledges that a billing system error resulted in a small number of customers in the Street Lighting, Sentinel Lights and Unmetered Scattered Load rate classes in North Bay being charged more than certain OEB-approved charges for several years. Customers in other rate classes, such as residential and commercial customers, were not affected.

The total amount over-collected over the four years, before the issue was corrected by North Bay Hydro for bills covering usage starting from July 2022, is approximately $18,700. Of that amount, more than 90% relates to the Street Lighting Class. The only customer in the Street Lighting and Unmetered Scattered Load classes is the City of North Bay, which is also North Bay Hydro's sole shareholder.

Under the terms of this AVC, North Bay Hydro will contribute $18,700 to the Low-income Energy Assistance Program (LEAP) to help customers in need within its service area. At that time, North Bay Hydro will notify customers of this contribution and the AVC in a form approved by the OEB.

North Bay Hydro will also pay an administrative monetary penalty of $1,000.  

Earlier this year, after a billing issue relating to the proration of certain charges came to the OEB’s attention, the OEB asked all electricity distributors to review their billing systems and advise the OEB if customers were being overcharged as a result of the same issue. North Bay Hydro reviewed its billing system and reported that it had been incorrectly prorating its fixed monthly charges for three of its rate classes and as a result overcharged customers in those rate classes.

An AVC is a binding commitment by a regulated entity to take measures to rectify or prevent non-compliance. Failure to abide by the terms of an AVC can lead to enforcement action being taken by the OEB.

“All licensed electricity distributors must be rigorous in applying OEB-approved rates and calculating accurate billing amounts for all classes of their customers. Billing accuracy is foundational to customer trust and the OEB is assured that North Bay Hydro has fixed this billing issue.”

– Brian Hewson, Vice-President, Consumer Protection & Industry Performance

Additional Information and Resources

About the Ontario Energy Board

The OEB is the independent regulator of Ontario’s electricity and natural gas sectors. It protects the interests of consumers and supports the collective advancement of the people of Ontario. Its goal is to deliver public value through prudent regulation and independent adjudicative decision-making which contributes to Ontario’s economic, social and environmental development.


Contact Us

Media Inquiries
Phone: 416-544-5171
Email: oebmedia@oeb.ca