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One-time tax credit prepares to power up

Timothy Schafer Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
By Timothy Schafer Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
May 10th, 2024

Get ready to flip the switch for the B.C. Electricity Affordability Credit, the Nelson Hydro version.

Nelson Hydro customers who had an active account as of Dec. 31, 2023 are eligible for the credit.

“The credit will be applied to Nelson Hydro customers’ bills as a one-time payment on their next electricity bill after April 15, 2024, not spread out over the next 12 months as BC Hydro and FortisBC are doing,” noted Nelson Hydro manager Scott Spencer.

“Some customers will receive only the minimum credit of $24 while others will see much higher amounts.

Last month the province began offering the B.C. Electricity Affordability Credit that will be applied to bills until March 31, 2025.

Based on 4.6 per cent of a person’s electricity consumption — from Jan. 1, 2023 to Dec. 31, 2023 — the credit was announced that it could save around $100 for the average B.C. Hydro residential customer.

A comparable credit is available to customers of non-B.C. Hydro electricity utilities, including FortisBC, but the credit will be applied differently.

For Fortis BC customers, the new saving credit will start to be applied to the first bill after April 15, with the credit automatically calculated and divided over the hydro bills during the next 12 months.

 

Automatically approved

“There is no need to apply for the credit as it will be applied automatically,” noted a release from the Province on the tax credit. “Customers with more than one account will receive a credit on each account.”

To be eligible for the BC Hydro or FortisBC credit, people must have had an active account as of March 31, 2024.

“For the average household, this will provide savings of approximately $100,” the release explained. “Commercial businesses will see a credit of 4.6 per cent — or an average of $400, respectively — to help reduce rising operating costs.”

On the flip side of the ledger, beginning April 1 — as approved by the B.C. Utilities Commission — electricity bills for FortisBC and BC Hydro will increase by 2.3 per cent.

 

Information on the Nelson Hydro credit can be found at News Flash • BC Electricity Affordability Credit (nelson.ca).

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