The Government of Ontario is providing $9 million to support residential customers struggling to pay their energy bills as a result of COVID-19. The COVID-19 Energy Assistance Program (CEAP) is delivered directly by Niagara-on-the-Lake Hydro and Enbridge Gas, further to rules laid out by the Ontario Energy Board (OEB).
CEAP is a one time, on-bill credit for eligible residential electricity and natural gas customers to help them catch up on their energy bills and resume regular payments.
CEAP funding is limited. NOTL Hydro is expected to process applications in the order in which they are received. Submitting an application for CEAP does not guarantee funding.
Residential electricity customers may be eligible for CEAP funding if they meet the following criteria:
- The customer has an account with Niagara-on-the-Lake Hydro. Only the customer who is the account holder can submit an application for CEAP.
- The customer’s account was in good standing on March 17, 2020, and the customer was not enrolled in an arrears payment agreement for amounts owing prior to March 17, 2020. However, customers that enrolled in an arrears payment agreement for amounts that became owing after March 17, 2020 are eligible for CEAP.
- The customer failed to make complete payment for the electricity/gas charges (as applicable) on at least two bills issued since March 17, 2020, and has an overdue balance on the date of their application for CEAP.
- The customer, or their spouse or common-law partner that resides in the same residence:
- Is unemployed on the date of their application for CEAP; and
- Has received Employment Insurance or the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) since March 17, 2020
- The customer is required to confirm that this is the case on their CEAP application form.
- The customer has not received emergency financial assistance for their electricity bills under the Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LEAP) in 2020, and has not received funding under the Ontario Electricity Support Program in 2020.
CEAP BENEFIT AMOUNTS
Electricity customers may qualify for a one-time CEAP credit for half of the electricity charges that are overdue on the date of their application for CEAP, up to a maximum of $115.
The CEAP credit can be higher for eligible electricity customers if their home is mainly heated by electricity or they use one of three at-home energy-intensive medical devices (kidney dialysis, mechanical ventilator or oxygen concentrator). In that case, they may qualify for a one-time CEAP credit for half of the electricity charges that are overdue on the date of their application, up to a maximum of $230.
HOW TO APPLY
Niagara-on-the-Lake Hydro has 2 simple methods to apply:
- DOWNLOAD THE PDF FORM. Complete the form and email it to email@example.com. Our Customer Service staff will review your application in order of receipt. You will be notified of your application status and any resulting credit on your bill.
- MAIL IN. If you are not able to complete the PDF form, call 905-468-4235 during office hours of 8:30am to 4:30pm (Monday to Friday). Customer Service staff will check several basic eligibility criteria and if you meet those criteria, you will be mailed the forms.
NOTL Hydro can not accept applications prior to July 13, 2020. We are expected to process applications in the order in which they are received, and to process complete applications within 10 business days of receipt.
COVID-19 Energy Assistance Program for Small Business Customers
The government also announced $8 million for the COVID-19 Energy Assistance Program for Small Business (CEAP-SB) to help small businesses that are struggling to pay their energy bills as a result of the COVID-19 emergency. We expect that program details will be available later this summer.