The Ontario Energy Board (OEB) is an independent regulatory body that makes decisions and provides advice to the government in order to contribute to a sustainable, reliable energy sector and to help consumers get value from their natural gas and electricity services. We do this by:
In the electricity sector, the Board sets transmission and distribution rates, and approves the System Operator's budget and fees. The Board also sets the rate for the Standard Supply Service for distribution utilities that supply electricity (commodity) directly to consumers, referred to as the Regulated Price Plan. The OEB develops Codes and Rules which govern the relationships between regulated entities and their customers. The OEB establishes performance standards for regulated utilities. The OEB carries out compliance and enforcement activities in this regard, and also monitors and audits utility performance and reporting. The OEB licenses all electricity market participants including the System Operator, generators, transmitters, distributors, wholesalers and retailers. Board approval is required for the construction of electricity transmission lines longer than two kilometres. As well, the Board is responsible for approving specific business arrangements, including utility mergers and acquisitions, involving the regulated parts of Ontario’s electricity industry.
- Establishing rules that utilities and other participants must follow in providing services to consumers and other market sector participants
- Setting rates and prices that are reasonable to consumers and that allow utilities to invest in the system
- Encouraging higher performance from natural gas and electricity utilities and measuring progress
- Making the consumer’s own usage, and the broader energy issues, easier to understand
- Looking out for consumer interests, investigating complaints and applying penalties, where appropriate
- Thinking about the long-term needs of the energy sector and developing regulatory policy to meet emerging challenges.
The Board also monitors markets in the electricity sector for the efficiency, fairness and transparency and competitiveness of the markets as well as reporting on any abuse or potential abuse of market power. The Board reviews the market rules, reliability standards developed by North American reliability authorities or the System Operator, and adjudicate appeals of IESO orders.
In the natural gas sector, the Board regulates Ontario's natural gas utilities which are required to have their rates approved by the OEB. The OEB also establishes rules that govern the activities of utilities in relation to providing services to consumers and other sector participants.
The OEB licenses all energy sellers who directly supply natural gas to residential and small commercial consumers.
The Board is required to determine if the construction of a natural gas pipeline is in the public interest by considering need, safety, economic feasibility, community benefits, security of supply and environmental impacts. Each municipality may grant a gas utility the right to deliver gas service and use road allowances or utility easements within its borders. The specific terms and conditions of these franchise agreements between the municipality and the utility are subject to Board approval.
The objective of this RFP is to establish a vendor of record to retain consultants to be available for a period of 3 years to give expert advice to Board staff on areas as noted in the topic list below. This advice in the form of consultant reports or informal discussions may be used by staff to support the development of regulatory policy or in the development of the evidentiary record in Board hearings.
Details of the specific deliverables for each assignment will be finalized at the time of the engagement. The commitment to the general terms and conditions to provide expert advice is for a three year term with an option for two (2) additional years. No volume of work is guaranteed or should be inferred by the successful bidders.
The VOR is not intended to be a vehicle for replacing existing staff, but rather to supplement internal resources or to meet emerging needs.
Full details are provided in the RFP document which is available only through MERX at www.merx.com or 1-800-964-6379, MERX reference number 0000072223.