OTTAWA – Hydro Ottawa would like to remind its customers that there is financial support available for eligible residential customers that have fallen behind on their energy bills as a result of the COVID-19 epidemic.
On July 13, the provincial government launched the $9 million COVID-19 Energy Assistance Program (CEAP) in order to provide relief to customers struggling to pay their energy bills.
Hydro Ottawa encourages its customers to apply for the one-time credit, but to keep in mind eligibility requirements, which include:
- As of the date customers are applying, they must have overdue amounts owing from at least two electricity bills since March 17, 2020.
- Customers can not be behind on their bills prior to the March 17, 2020, Provincial Declaration of Emergency.
- The account holder (the person whose name is on the bill) or the account holder’s spouse or common-law partner (must share the same address);
- Is unemployed on the date the CEAP application is submitted; and
- Qualified for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) or received Employment Insurance (EI) after March 17, 2020.
- The account holder has not received Ontario Electricity Support Program (OESP) or Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LEAP) grants in 2020.
The application and further information about the program can be found on Hydro Ottawa’s dedicated web page. CEAP funding is limited. Once the first-come, first-served provincial program funds are depleted, the COVID-19 Energy Assistance Program will close.
For small business customers, the Province will be launching an $8 million COVID-19 Energy Assistance Program for Small Businesses (CEAP-SB) on August 17, 2020. More information will be available on Hydro Ottawa’s website in the coming days.
Throughout the COVID-19 outbreak, Hydro Ottawa has been working closely with the Ontario Energy Board and Ontario Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, to address customer concerns about managing electricity costs.
Other pro-active measures Hydro Ottawa has undertaken to support customers, includes:
- Extending the provincial winter disconnection ban to July 31, 2020 for all residential and commercial customers;
- Offering flexible payment plans in order to provide customers with more time to pay outstanding balances on their account if needed; and
- Reminding customers experiencing financial hardship that it offers several other financial assistance programs.
“The past few months have been particularly difficult for our community, and our customers. Whether it’s ensuring safe and reliable power to their homes or businesses, or by listening to them during these uncertain times; we are here to help wherever we can. For customers who are struggling to pay their electricity bills, we are pleased to offer the COVID-19 Energy Assistance Program in the hope that this will give them some financial relief so they can focus on themselves and their families. If you are struggling, please reach out to our team so we can help connect you to one of the financial assistance programs we have available.” - Julie Lupinacci, Chief Customer Officer
Manager, Media and Public Affairs
Tel: 613-738-5499 ext. 2345