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Nova Scotia Power wants to raise the cost of electricity by 11.6 per cent by 2024


Customers and business operators are voicing their opposition to a possible power rate hike in Nova Scotia.

“We can't really afford a price hike right now,” said Aris Makridis, who operates Martinizing Dry Cleaning in Halifax.

Nova Scotia Power is asking for a rate hike of 11.6 per cent by 2024. The utility argues it’s needed to transform the grid.

“We've got requirements from both the federal and provincial governments to decarbonize our grid by 2030 and for Nova Scotia that's a significant undertaking considering our historical reliance on coal,” said Nova Scotia Power president and CEO Peter Gregg.

The proposed hike is higher than initially planned. Nova Scotia Power blames fuel prices and wants to defer paying hundreds of millions of fuel costs years to down the line.

Consumer advocate William Mahody says he wants everything laid out.

“There's no sense in taking a cost and simply pushing it down the road only to benefit the company and the interest we have to pay to them,” Mahody said. “Those numbers have to be looked at and determined in that fashion.”

Nova Scotia Power also wants to earn up to 9.5 per cent on its rate of return and is requesting the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board to approve a so-called “earnings sharing mechanism” that would let the power company split earnings greater than it’s regulated rate of return with customers.

“This is not the right time to allow Nova Scotia power to increase their profits when Nova Scotians are dealing with an affordability crisis,” said Nova Scotia’s Liberal leader Zach Churchill. “And Nova Scotians are already having a tough time paying for gas, food, and power.”

“They're decreasing risk while increasing profit and that is very concerning,” said NDP leader Claudia Chender.

NS Power President and CEO argues it’s not about profit but an access to capital.

CTV News asked several customers whether they supported the idea of a rate hike.

“To me that sounds ridiculous. It's already costing everyone an arm and a leg to power the house as it is,” said William Brooks.

Back at the dry cleaners, their hours are already reduced but each power bill is about $1,500.

“We're paying so much in power bills. It's just if they put it up we're not going to be able to make it,” said Makridis. Top Stories

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