Thunder Bay Hydro and Kenora Hydro Set to Explore Merge

Thunder Bay, ON – Today, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Thunder Bay Hydro Electricity Distribution Inc. (Thunder Bay Hydro) and Kenora Hydro Electric Corporation Ltd. (Kenora Hydro) has been signed to authorize the exploration of a merger between the two utilities.

“The current technological and regulatory environment offers both opportunities for and challenges to local electricity distribution companies that might be better addressed through an integration of resources,” says Dave Sinclair, President and CEO of Kenora Hydro. “Our two utilities have already worked together in areas such as conservation, back office support and the acquisition of Smart Meter Technology. We share common values and have agreed on some vital common objectives as we explore the possibility of a merger.”

“A number of Ontario LDC’s are currently exploring or undertaking consolidation in order to achieve economies of scale and enhance their capability to serve customers in an industry that continues to become more complex,” points out Robert Mace, President and CEO of Thunder Bay Hydro. “As this complexity continues, larger, better resourced utilities will be better positioned to effectively and efficiently meet the needs of our customers.”

The two utilities will now begin a process of analyzing the potential advantages and feasibility of how their customers, municipal shareholders and other stakeholders might benefit through such a merger. This analysis will include consultation with customers and shareholders in both Kenora and Thunder Bay.

A copy of the MOU will be made available on the websites of both utilities.
Ultimately any recommendation resulting from this analysis to merge the utilities will require the approval of both the Corporation of the City of Kenora and the Corporation of the City of Thunder Bay, who are the municipal shareholders of each company.

Kenora Hydro has 14 employees who are dedicated to the delivery of electricity to its 5,600 customers in the City of Kenora, Ontario. Thunder Bay Hydro has 130 employees who service electrical distribution to over 50,000 customers in the City of Thunder Bay.

Both Local Distribution Companies are located in Northwestern Ontario and are owned by their respective municipalities.

For More Information –
Thunder Bay Hydro
Eileen Dias, Communications and Events Coordinator
Thunder Bay Hydro 807-343-1141

Kenora Hydro
Dave Sinclair, President and CEO
Kenora Hydro Electric Corporation Ltd. 807-467-2075

Backgrounder
Objectives of Merge
The Memorandum of Understanding between Thunder Bay Hydro and Kenora Hydro authorizes the evaluation of whether or not to merge the two municipally owned electricity distribution companies. It includes the following objectives of such a merge:

  •  A merged company will continue to be owned by the Municipal Shareholders.
  • The merge would create a Northwestern Ontario based entity with local accountability and ownership. The entity will maintain a physical presence in each of the Parties’ service territories.
  • The merge should create opportunities for efficiencies through economies of scale, innovation for the benefit of ratepayers, and competitive advantages in all relevant service territories, while sharing best practices across all facets of the business.
  • That Municipal Shareholder value would be maximized now and in the future and that all such shareholders are treated fairly, while preserving asset value.
  • The Parties would ensure that the OEB’s “no harm” to ratepayers test is met.
  • Customer service levels would need to meet or exceed existing customer service levels of each Party.
  • Existing employees would be treated fairly and may benefit from increased employment opportunities.
  • The Parties would ensure that the existing focus on employee and public safety is maintained or enhanced.
  • The economic development and social and environmental needs of each community  would continue to be served.

The full text of the Memorandum of Understanding will be made available through each utility’s website.

City Introduces Recycle Coach™ App

A Guide to Recycling and Waste Collection

The City of Kenora is pleased to introduce the Recycle Coach™ app and website plug-in to assist our residents with recycling and waste collection. This is being announced in celebration of Waste Reduction Week in Canada.

Developed by Recycle Coach™, the free app provides residents with a full range of information normally found on the City’s website. Once residents have downloaded the free Recycle Coach™ app, it will give full access to special recycling features, including a search function called “What Goes Where” that lets residents quickly find out what to do with regular and out-of-the-ordinary items. Plus there are many other tips on recycling and reducing waste. Reminders can be set for regular recycling and waste collection, and alerts are built in for House Hazardous Waste days, Christmas tree recycling, and more.

“This is a new way for the City to connect with residents about our resource recovery and waste diversion programs. We hope this tool will encourage residents to recycle more often and answer questions they may have about recycling and waste diversion,” says Mukesh Pokharel, Environmental Division Lead.

The recycling and waste diversion programs in place now are very successful. Between January and October this year, the City has diverted 1,100 tons of recycling materials (cardboard, paper, comingle), 57 tons of electronics, and almost 45 tons of hazardous waste from the landfill. The newly established hazardous waste depot at the Transfer Station ran very smoothly throughout the summer, which closed for the season at the end of September and will reopen in early June next year.

City of Kenora is adding the Recycle Coach™ app and website plug-in to its communication outreach activities. We will continue to have information on www.kenora.ca, and distribute printed materials for residents who prefer traditional promotional and educational materials.

Kerri Holder, Communications Clerk 807-467-2191 kholder@kenora.ca
www.kenora.ca

Be Thankful for the Environment This Thanksgiving

Did you know?

The volume of Canadian household waste increases up to 45% between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day.  That’s an average of 110pounds of garbage per person!

How can you make a difference?

Shop smart for your family gathering

  • Use reusable shopping bags at the grocery store
  • Buy in bulk. Buying a big bottle of juice for example (instead of individually packaged smaller cartons) is a good way to cut down on the amount of material you will need to recycle
  • Invest in a roasting pan rather than disposable pans

 Plan Ahead

  • Use reusable plates, cutlery and napkins.  Stay away from disposal dinnerware and try your best to use cloth napkins that you can throw in the washer after your gathering is over.
  • Decorate with natural materials like tree branches and berries
  • Have a designated recycling bin for your guests to use while at your party
  • Practice portion control for your guests. By planning these portions ahead of time, you will find that you have less leftovers and also less food waste.

Freeze, re-use or giveaway leftovers

  • Give guests leftovers to take home
  • Donate to the local shelter or soup kitchen
  • Try your leftovers in a new recipe!
  • Compost your food waste

 *Thanksgiving tips from Recycle Coach

recycle-coach

 

Don’t forget! You can also drop off your compostable yard waste such as leaves, brush, and grass clippings for no charge at the City of Kenora Transfer Station, 401 Mellick Ave until October 31st.  Remember to place these materials in a compostable bag such as environmentally friendly paper bags.

Have a safe and enjoyable weekend!

 

All City offices, buildings and facilities will be closed on Monday October 10th for Thanksgiving holiday.
Call 467-2080 for after hours troubles.