The Fountain Pen, Guelph's On-Line News

City Collecting More Feedback About Hydro Merger

Web posted on November 07, 2017

After more than a year of industry research, in-depth financial analysis, and community input, Guelph City Council decided to begin negotiating a merger between Guelph Hydro Electric Systems and Alectra.

We want to hear from you again before City Council makes its final decision about the proposed merger on December 13, 2017.

About the survey
Over the past year, most people we spoke with said these were the top five priorities to consider when reviewing options for Guelph Hydro:

  1. Rates
  2. Service
  3. Community Planning
  4. Environment
  5. Local jobs

City staff have used that input when we considered all of the possibilities for the future of Guelph Hydro, and it's front and centre in the transaction we're negotiating now.

Now, city staff are working with Oracle Poll to collect more feedback from Guelph Hydro customers. Oracle Poll is using random-digit dialing to call 500 landlines and mobile phone numbers in Guelph and Rockwood. A sample size of 500 people produces results which can be considered accurate within 4.4 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

If you are selected, a live operator will ask your opinion about the proposed merger's effect on rates, service, community planning, environment and local jobs. The survey will take about five minutes to complete.

Participation is voluntary. All individual responses will be kept confidential.

If you're not selected for the phone survey, you can complete the survey on the Energizing Tomorrow website starting on November 9. Print copies are also available upon request.

See the results November 30

The City will publish a community engagement report to be presented to Guelph City Council as the shareholder of Guelph Hydro on December 13, 2017. Community feedback collected from telephone and web surveys, open house events, and social media conversations will be carefully analyzed and presented.

About the proposed Guelph Hydro-Alectra merger

For Guelph Hydro customers, a merger with Alectra offers more moderate rate increases than customers would experience if Guelph Hydro remained a stand-alone utility, reliable service, local response teams based in Guelph Hydro's current location, an increased focus on innovation, and a new Green Energy & Technology Centre.

The merger would allow Guelph to become a partner in Alectraan industry-leading publicly-owned utility. Other partners include the cities of Barrie, Hamilton, Markham, Mississauga, St. Catharines, and Vaughan, and Ontario Municipal Employee Retirement (OMERS). No shareholder owns more than 30% of the company.

Negotiating teams from Guelph Hydro and Alectra are discussing the financial, legal and operational details over the coming weeks, and you can read the council report on Thursday, November 30.

Guelph City Council will hear delegations and make its final decision about the proposed merger during an open meeting as the shareholder of Guelph Hydro on December 13, 2017.

To speak to Guelph City Council during the meeting, please register by Friday, December 8, 2017.