Natural Gas Rates and Gas Operating Agreements

Paul Murray, Administrative Officer with District of Saanich and Chair of the AVICC CAO Natural Gas Working Group and Jerry Berry, FortisBC’s Consultant provided an update to AVICC Executive on September 10, 2014 which included the following key points:

  • Word has been received that during the fall legislative session the provincial government is expecting to consider revisions to the legislation to facilitate eligible AVICC local governments to be able to begin receiving operating fees. The consultant noted that as a separate issue from the coordinated work undertaken over the years between AVICC and FortisBC, the status quo for five major island industrials is being maintained by including a regulation exempting the five major industrials on the island from paying operating fees leaving an inequity within this group as industrials elsewhere in the province will continue to pay operating fees.
  • The schedule of reductions in gas rates was highlighted noting that the 20-25% rate reduction would be phased in over 3-4 years with the first one of 7% being effective January 1, 2015.
  • The first opportunity to apply operating fees would be March 1, 2015.
  • There has been one minor change to the operating agreement template that was distributed previously. A template staff report, policy paper and the template operating agreement will be forwarded to the 20 affected local governments in October encouraging local governments not to delay in getting them signed so that they are in position to implement operating fees as soon as all the pieces are in place.