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Struggling with Electricity Bills this Holiday Season? Help is available

Thursday, December 20, 2012 1:13 PM


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TORONTO, Dec. 20, 2012 /CNW/ - Between the gift giving, decorating and entertaining, few would argue that the Holidays are easy. For the approximately 370,000 people considered 'low-income' 1living in Toronto, extra holiday expenses can mean falling behind on other payments. Toronto Hydro-Electric System Limited ("Toronto Hydro") reminds customers that help is available. The Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LEAP) is available year-round to provide emergency relief to eligible low-income customers who are experiencing difficulty paying already 'past due' bills.

Developed by the Ontario Energy Board, LEAP is funded in Toronto through Toronto Hydro's rates and provides eligible customers with a one-time financial assistance grant of up to a maximum of $500 per year. From January 1 to November 30, 2012, LEAP has assisted 1,180 low-income households in Toronto, at an average payout of approximately $400 per household.

Toronto Hydro will provide both written and verbal notifications of arrears, but unless the customer asks for help the end result could be disconnection of the electricity service.  Disconnection is always the last resort.  Often, payment plans can be arranged and customer care representatives can provide information on the LEAP program, which is confidential and delivered in Toronto through the Neighbourhood Information Post.

FACTS

  • LEAP is delivered in Toronto through Neighbourhood Information Post, a local social service agency. If you are a Toronto Hydro customer in need of assistance or if you have specific questions about LEAP, please visit www.torontohydro.com/leap 
  • LEAP is funded in Toronto through Toronto Hydro's rates and provides eligible customers with   a financial assistance grant of up to a maximum of $500 per year. It is not intended to provide regular or ongoing bill payment assistance.
  • This grant is available to low-income residents who meet program criteria and who have:  recently received a 'past due' Toronto Hydro bill and/or; recently received a disconnection notice from Toronto Hydro.

About Toronto Hydro 
The principal business of the Corporation and its subsidiaries is the distribution of electricity by Toronto Hydro-Electric System Limited. Toronto Hydro-Electric System owns and operates an electricity distribution system, which delivers electricity to approximately 712,000 customers located in the City of Toronto. It is the largest municipal electricity distribution company in Canada and distributes approximately 18% of the electricity consumed in the Province of Ontario.

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1 Profile of Low Income in the City of Toronto, City of Toronto Social development, Finance and Administration, 2010 report


Image with caption: ""Patricia", a Toronto Hydro customer and mom of three children, tries her best to conserve electricity to keep her bills down. She took advantage of the LEAP program to help with hydro bills (CNW Group/Toronto Hydro Corporation)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20121220_C2768_PHOTO_EN_22166.jpg

SOURCE: Toronto Hydro Corporation

Tanya Bruckmueller, Toronto Hydro-Electric System
Tbruckmueller@torontohydro.com

W: 416-542-2621
C: 416-903-0440

(Source: CNW )
(Source: Quotemedia)

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