The Government of Ontario has committed to install a smart electricity meter in 800,000 homes and small businesses by 2007 and throughout Ontario by 2010.
The code amendments clarify the roles and responsibilities of electricity distribution utilities in relation to the management of smart meter data and billing processes as they work toward implementing the Province's smart metering initiative.
The amendments will ensure the Board's regulatory instruments accommodate the Province's smart metering initiative and related policies and ensure smart metering is implemented on a cost effective basis during the transition period to full implementation in 2010.
As a result of the amendments, utilities that have elected to implement time-of-use (TOU) pricing will have two options: they can either allow consumers with smart meters to choose TOU pricing; or they can make TOU pricing mandatory for anyone with a smart meter in their service area. The OEB is also proposing a new amendment to require utilities to notify their customers directly (by bill insert or other direct means such as a letter, other direct mailing or telephone call) about whether TOU pricing will be provided on a mandatory or voluntary basis.