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Emergency Billing Relief Program for Wildfire Evacuation Orders, AUC Bulletin 2023-04

Link to Bulletin Summarized

Electricity and Gas – Billing

The AUC  implemented an emergency billing relief program (“EBRP”), which temporarily paused the electric and gas utility billing for individuals affected by 2023 wildfire evacuations in Alberta. The EBRP provides billing credits to eligible utility customers, which is retroactively applied to the timeframe they were impacted by mandatory evacuations from wildfires in 2023. During a billing pause, outstanding utility bills will be temporarily paused, no late fees or penalties will be applied and no disconnections will occur.

The EBRP was developed in collaboration with various entities overseen by the AUC, including stakeholders for electric and natural gas distribution utilities, competitive retailers, the Alberta Electric System Operator (“AESO”) and regulated service providers.

All stakeholders have distinct responsibilities in accordance with the program manual, which is available on the AUC’s website. The EBRP manual: (i) outlines the steps for utilities to follow during a mandatory evacuation order and (ii) expectations and responsibilities across the industry when a mandatory evacuation order is in place.

On October 31, 2023, following the conclusion of the 2023 wildfire season, the AUC will consult with stakeholders to create a billing relief system for future evacuation orders that may result from emergencies such as floods, wildfires or other natural disasters.

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