Hydro One customers are saying enough is enough when it comes to the rising hydro bills. Jeannette Kosnaski is a Barry’s Bay resident and one of the organizers of the ‘Hydro One – Enough is Enough’ campaign, which is gathering a petition and planning a rally at Queen’s Park.

Kosnaski says the stories they’ve heard from across rural Ontario are heartbreaking…

The group’s petition has over 17 thousand signatures and over 20 thousand members have joined their Facebook group.

PC Energy Critic John Yakabuski sympathizes with the group. He has some advice for the Province on how to keep hydro costs low…

Yakabuski says some of the programs the government has in place, like the Ontario Energy and Property Tax Credit, saveONenergy, and the Low-Income Energy Assistance Program make a small difference – but he says ongoing increases put them right back to where they started.

The ‘Hydro One – Enough is Enough’ campaign is demanding the removal of regulatory charges, the debt retirement charge and the HST on hydro bills. They’re also asking for the removal of smart meters and a standard delivery charge for all Ontarians and not a higher charge for those living in rural Ontario.

Yakabuski applauds the Facebook group, but he’s not confident they’ll succeed…

Jennifer Beaudry, a spokesperson for the Minister of Energy says the delivery charge is there to fulfill Hydro One’s function and that the rate applications go through public regulatory review through the Ontario Energy Board.

She also says the Ministry is moving forward with a plan to remove the cost of the Debt Retirement charge from residential bills after December 31st, which will save consumers about 70 dollars per year.

Beaudry says they are also proposing a new program under the Ontario Electricity Support Program, which would provide financial support to low-income families. It would come into effect on January 1st 2016 and would provide a 20 to 50 dollar monthly credit for those who were eligible.

According to Beaudry, with these two plans it place, it would mean a family of four with an annual income of less than 28 thousand dollars would see a combined savings of about 525 dollars per year.

The ‘Hydro One – Enough is Enough’ campaign rally is planned for May 13th at Queen’s Park, and more information can be found on their Facebook page.

Yakabuski says even if the group isn’t successful, we all need to keep the pressure on.

Kosnaski says if they aren’t successful, they will re-evaluate and keep going until something is done to help residents.